I have written here previously about the pastor’s wife. What I want to write about here specifically is the situation of considering a man for eldership. The scenario runs like this; there is a man in the church and he is giving evidence of displaying eldership characteristics. However, his wife is awkward and a generally unhelpful influence in the church. Should such a man be considered for eldership? Does the character of the elder’s wife matter? Here are some thoughts:-
- The choice that a man makes of who is to be his wife reveals something about him. A godly man will want to marry someone who is displaying godly desires. If he has an awkward busy-body as a wife it may well reveal a lack of godliness in him. And you must have godly elders.
- If the man has got a disruptive wife it indicates something about how he is managing his home. In 1 Timothy 3:4-5, regarding the qualifications for an elder, we read: He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full[ respect. (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?). A disruptive wife probably indicates he is not really managing his home well. This would prompt us to think taht he is disqualified from being an elder.
- On the practical side, for an elder to have an awkward wife is just going to make it difficult to work with such a man. His wife is unlikely to be supporting him in the ministry to which you have appointed him to. This will inevitably lead to all kinds of struggles in him seeking to fulfill his commitment to the church.
So if a man has a difficult and awkward wife it would be an indication that such a man should not be an elder.
(This blog-post based on statements in Q and A session at “Healthy Churches Event” at Duke Street, Richmond on 3rd September 2018)