Forest Grove Church is an elder-led, congregation-ruled church.
“Elder-Led” means that God has given the Elders charge to lead the church, under the guidance of God’s Word, to carry out the mission Jesus has given the church—namely, to make disciples of all peoples (Matt. 28:18-20). The primary way Elders lead the church is through teaching God’s Word (1 Tim. 3:2;Titus 1:9) and equipping the saints for ministry (Eph. 4:11-12).
The Bible teaches that a church should be led by a plurality of Elders (Acts 20:17; Phil. 1:1; Titus 1:5). Ideally, every church should be led by more than one elder; that is, qualified men of godly character (1 Tim. 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9), intentional care for the members of the church (1 Tim. 3:5; 1 Pet. 5:2), deep conviction in right doctrine and biblical knowledge (Titus 1:9), and demonstrable competence in the handling of God’s Word through teaching (1 Tim. 3:2; 2 Tim. 2:24; Titus 1:9). These four qualities (character, care, conviction, and competence) must be observed over time by the congregation for a man to be qualified to be an Elder. Furthermore, the Bible uses the terms elder, overseer, bishop, and pastor interchangeably (Acts 20:17, 28; 1 Pet. 5:1-2).
It is important to note that the Elders do not have the final say in all matters. At Forest Grove, we do not hold to an elder-rule model of government. Instead, we believe Scripture teaches that the congregation as a whole has the final say in four key areas: doctrine, membership, discipline, and appointing elders




Gary Rodenbaugh




Wade Kennedy