.

The Historical Development of the PCA Book of Church Order

Chapter 4 : The Particular Church

Paragraph 2 :

4-2. Its officers are its teaching and ruling elders and its deacons.

[Historical Summary : The current PCA text dates to ____, though in substance the content remains that of PCUSA 1789. PCA 1973 and the Proposed BCO are interesting for appearing redundant with the wording "Pastor, Pastors,...", though it can be presumed that the second mention was intended as a reference to associate and assistant pastors.]

Background and Comparison :
PCA 1973, Adopted text, as printed in the Minutes of General Assembly, p. 129
Its officers are the Pastor, Pastors, the Ruling Elders, and the Deacons.

Continuing Presbyterian Church 1973, Proposed text, 4-2
Its officers are the Pastor, Pastors, the Ruling Elders, and the Deacons.

PCUS 1933, V-§21
PCUS 1925, V-§21
PCUS 1879, II-4-2
Its officers are the Pastor, the Ruling Elders, and the Deacons.


PCUS 1869 draft, II-4-2
The officers of a congregation are, the Pastor, the Ruling Elders, and the Deacons.

PCUS 1867 draft, II-4-2
The officers of each congregation are the pastor, who is a teaching elder; the ruling elders; and the deacons.

PCUSA 1789, III, paragraph 2
The ordinary and perpetual officers, in the church are, Bishops, or Pastors; the representatives of the people, usually styled Ruling Elders and Deacons.

COMMENTARY :
F.P. Ramsay, Exposition of the Book of Church Order
(1898, p. 31), on II-4-2 :
21.--II. Its officers are the Pastor, the Ruling Elders, and the Deacons.
This implies that, ordinarily, a particular church should have one Pastor, but a plurality of Ruling Elders and of Deacons. A church has no other officers than these; therefore trustees, Sunday-school officers, society officers, etc., are not officers of the church, nor independent of the control of the proper officers.



©PCA Historical Center, 12330 Conway Road, St. Louis, MO, 2007. All Rights Reserved.

Chapter Index [links to Par. 1 of each chapter]:
FoG..
1
2
3.
4
5.
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
I. King & Head of Church
.§1.
§4
§5
RoD
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
II. Preliminary Principles
§1
§2
§3
§4
§5
§6
§7
§8
DfW
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
[FoG = Form of Government ; RoD = Rules of Discipline ; DfW = Directory for Worship]