Church Organization

Set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city (Titus 1:5).


Following the plan of organization found in the New Testament, churches of Christ are autonomous and there is no headquarters on earth. Christ is the head of the church, and the church is to be subject to Him. (Ephesians 5:23-24).


Elders are designated as the overseers of the local congregation (Acts 14:23, Acts 20:17-28, Titus 1:5-14). Therefore, there is no central, earthly headquarters of the church and no organization superior to the elders of each local congregation. Elders are sometimes called bishops (Philippians 1:1, 1 Timothy 3:1-2, Titus 1:5-7), overseers (Acts 20:28), or pastors (Ephesians 4:11). All terms are synonymous for the same office.


Deacons are servants appointed to attend specific works of the church. (Acts 6:3, I Timothy 3:8-13). As elders are the overseers of the congregation, deacons serve under the oversight of the elders.


Preachers, sometimes called evangelists or ministers, preach the word of God. (2 Timothy 4:2-5). Like deacons, preachers serve under the oversight of the elders.