It is a true saying that if someone wants to be an elder, a he desires an honorable responsibility.
For an elder must be a man whose life cannot be spoken against. He must be faithful to his wife. b He must exhibit self-control, live wisely, and have a good reputation. He must enjoy having guests in his home and must be able to teach.
He must not be a heavy drinker or be violent. He must be gentle, peace loving, and not one who loves money.
He must manage his own family well, with children who respect and obey him.
For if a man cannot manage his own household, how can he take care of God's church?
An elder must not be a new Christian, because he might be proud of being chosen so soon, and the Devil will use that pride to make him fall. c7
Also, people outside the church must speak well of him so that he will not fall into the Devil's trap and be disgraced.
In the same way, deacons must be people who are respected and have integrity. They must not be heavy drinkers and must not be greedy for money.
They must be committed to the revealed truths of the Christian faith and must live with a clear conscience.
Before they are appointed as deacons, they should be given other responsibilities in the church as a test of their character and ability. If they do well, then they may serve as deacons.
In the same way, their wives d must be respected and must not speak evil of others. They must exercise self-control and be faithful in everything they do.
A deacon must be faithful to his wife, and he must manage his children and household well.
Those who do well as deacons will be rewarded with respect from others and will have increased confidence in their faith in Christ Jesus.
I am writing these things to you now, even though I hope to be with you soon,
so that if I can't come for a while, you will know how people must conduct themselves in the household of God. This is the church of the living God, which is the pillar and support of the truth.
Without question, this is the great mystery of our faith: Christ e appeared in the flesh and was shown to be righteous by the Spirit. f He was seen by angels and was announced to the nations. He was believed on in the world and was taken up into heaven. g
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)