Acts 20:28 And now beware! Be sure that you feed and shepherd God's flock--his church, purchased with his blood--over whom the Holy Spirit has appointed you as elders.
Paul was giving his farewell address to the elders of the church at Ephesus. He had spent considerable time at the church preaching, teaching and disciple making. He had poured his heart into the church and knew that this was going to be the last time he would be with them. He had a deep love for the church and wanted them to do things the right way.
Paul knew that without strong leadership there was the danger of the church slipping backwards. He warned the church elders to do their job, to feed and shepherd the flock. No church will stay on track with the Lord and have an impact on her community without proper nourishment and guidance. Every church needs leaders who take serving the Lord seriously, who take their faith seriously.
Paul reminded them that the church was not theirs. Jesus purchased the church with His shed blood at Calvary. Jesus alone is the head of the church. No one individual or group of individuals run the church. When man takes over the controls of the church, bad things happen. There is the danger of false teaching taking root. There is a huge pride issue amongst the leadership. There is power issues. There is the danger of controlling who may, or may not, serve in the church beyond what the Scriptures teach.
Paul also reminded them that their roles as leaders in the church was by God's appointment and not man's. If church leadership is determined any other way, problems generally arise. Church leaders should only be approved after waiting on the Lord. There should be adequate time for the church to discuss and pray over potential leaders. There should be clear guidelines and expectations spelled out. No one should be allowed to serve in leadership in the church who is not spiritually qualified to do so. When we do things God's way, good things happen.