1 Timothy 3:1-7 (JDV)
1 Timothy 3:1 This saying is reliable: “If anyone aims at being an overseer, he desires a noble achievement.”
1 Timothy 3:2 That is why an overseer must be blameless,1 the husband of one wife, moderate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, competent to teach,
1 Timothy 3:3 not addicted to wine, not a bully but tolerant, not belligerant, not loving silver.
1 Timothy 3:4 He must manage his own household competently and have his children under control with every dignity.
1 Timothy 3:5 (If anyone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of God’s congregation?)2
1 Timothy 3:6 He must not be a new convert, or he might become conceited and incur the same condemnation as the devil.
1 Timothy 3:7 Furthermore, he must have a good reputation among outsiders, so that he does not fall into disgrace and the devil’s trap.
Timothy had been left in Ephesus for the purpose of developing and appointing leaders for the congregation. These leaders apparently were not called pastors. That term is more popular in church leadership today than it was then. Those who managed local congregations were overseers, and they were assisted by deacons.
Their essential qualifications were:
- They must have solid marriages,
- They must be able to control their (adult) children,
- They must have personal self-control,
- They must maintain a good reputation,
- They must have proved themselves by experience.
The leaders are out-front. They reflect the character of the organization. Special care must be taken to provide for leaders who reflect the standards set by the LORD. His reputation is at stake.
LORD, may we be careful to reflect your godliness in all that we do. May we be wise enough to choose leaders who will honor you with their behavior.
1 ἀνεπίλημπτος = blameless. 1 Timothy 3:2; 5:7; 6:14.
2ἐκκλησία = congregation. 1 Timothy 3:5, 15; 5:16.