What guidance does God

What guidance does God’s Word give on the role of an elder’s wife?

Although Paul gives qualities requisite in the wives of deacons (1 Timothy 3:11), he does not do the same for overseers’ wives. Some biblical principles do provide guidance for her role, however.

When the Lord entrusted responsibility for subduing and having dominion over the earth, He gave it to them, the male and female (Genesis 1:28), Adam and Eve. When that work began, Adam received the responsibility for tilling the garden, the commandment about what to eat, and the work of naming the animals (2:15, 16, 19, 20). It was not "good" for Adam to "be alone" in this, so the Lord made Eve (v18). Together, they were responsible for the work, but Adam carried out the work and Eve completed him in doing it.

An overseer’s wife, therefore, is an integral part of a unit that shares in overseeing the believers. Her husband does the work and she completes, supports, and enables him in this responsibility. She may have to help him make time for his work, and that will often mean sacrificing time she would enjoy with him. She will greatly enable him by living the Christian standards of God’s Word and seeking grace from the Lord to exemplify the qualities of a Christian wife. She may also help her husband by accompanying him when he gives spiritual counsel to assembly sisters. The overseers may ask her to assist them by dealing directly with a sister whose problem involves sensitive issues, difficult for men to address. At times, an elder’s wife may be able to provide insights that her husband’s male perspective lacks.

She will, at times, recognize that some matters her husband is handling must remain confidential and he is wise to keep them from her so as not to prejudice or overburden her. In any event, all she knows about her husband’s work is to remain between her and her husband. Information about oversight matters should never come from an overseer’s wife. Communicating such matters is his (or the oversight’s) responsibility, not hers.

D. Oliver