In Hoehner’s presentation at ETS (“Can a Woman Be a Pastor-Teacher”), he made a distinction between gifting by the Holy Spirit and holding an office in the church (Remember, I do not like the term “office”, but I’m using it here because Dr. Hoehner used it in his presentation.)
Hoehner suggested that an office can be recognized in Scripture when there are qualifications for holding that office. Therefore, he sees three distinct offices:
1. Apostle (qualifications given in Acts 1:15-26)
2. Elder/Bishop-overseer (qualifications given in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9)
3. Deacon (possibly deaconess) (qualifications given in 1 Timothy 3:8-13)
Hoehner did not like to use the term “pastor” for the office of elder/bishop, because he says that “pastoring” is a Spiritual gift, not an office. However, it is interesting to note that he sees “apostle” as both an office and a gift, and “deacon” as an office and a gift (since “deacon” acutally means “servant”).
Are these “offices” in the church? Are there other “offices”? Is there a better term than “office”?