Day 327.

And after Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and debate with them, Paul and Barnabas and some of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and the elders about this question. When they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and the apostles and the elders, and they declared all that God had done with them. (Acts 15:2, 4 ESV)

When conflict in the local church arose, even Paul and Barnabas sought to resolve it by appealing to a plurality of apostles and elders. So they travelled back to Jerusalem and made their appeal. The scene plays out with debate from both sides until it seems there is consensus on the issue. This connection among the churches, plurality of elders, and the formation of a court of elders from the churches to decide matters appealed from the local churches forms the basis of the Presbytery in Presbyterian church government. This is the first Presbytery meeting!

Lord, would you help us to function together to seek your will and trust your provision of elders. Would you guide your elders by the Holy Spirit and protect them from heresy and gracelessness.

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