Who recognizes overseers in a new assembly?

Who recognizes overseers in a new assembly?

Titus identified (Titus 1:5, "ordain," appoint, designate) elders in assemblies where no oversight existed. The authority for this came from the Word of God, not apostolic authority. He was dependent on God for the wisdom required. To preserve each assembly, Titus used the inspired guidelines from Paul to point out overseers the Spirit produced. Each assembly recognized these men as elders.

God used experienced hands to plant the assemblies whose history appears in the New Testament, so the pattern seems clear. Where God uses men in making disciples (Matthew 28:19), those men also teach assembly truth. They discern when God has formed an assembly with these believers. Later, as with Titus, they identify those who exhibit maturing characteristics of a shepherd. Heeding Proverbs 15:22, they receive counsel from spiritually mature men. In light of 1 Timothy 3:6, they wait for appropriate evidences of spiritual maturity in potential elders.

D. Oliver