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What is the role of members? This is a question I was asked recently. To best answer this question, we must understand the role of elders. We read in 1 Peter 5 that the elders are to shepherd the flock among them, exercising oversight and not under compulsion. Likewise, Hebrews 13:17 calls for the leaders to keep watch over the souls of the church members. In the qualifications of eldership found in 1 Timothy 3:1-7, Paul assumes a caring and shepherding role for the eldership over the members. Even in Paul’s life, we read in Acts 20:17-35 how he declared to the people of Ephesus the whole counsel of God and encouraged the elders to pay careful attention to the remaining flock. The role of the elders is to care for the people God entrusts to them. This care includes counseling, discipling, preaching, and praying. But how do the members fit into this care? Do a quick Google search regarding the ‘one another’ passages in the New Testament, and you will find over 50 verses. Listen to some of these commands: be at peace (Mk 9:50), love one another (John 13:34), serve one another (Gal 5:13), and speak the truth to one another (Eph 4:25), among others. Each of these commands shows the role of the church members to be involved in one another’s daily life and encourage one another to live for and love the Lord. To put it succinctly, the member's role is primarily preventative care. I say primarily because they also hold the position to receive and remove membership (a topic for another time). I say preventive care because, much like taking your car to get the oil changed so you do not blow up the motor, members care for one another to prevent the blowing up of one’s life. However, when one’s life blows up, the elders are called to shepherd, care for, and give guidance. Faithful members engage in one another’s life and give freedom to one another to speak into each other’s lives for their holiness and Godliness. May we be a membership lovingly providing preventative care to one another.