For they that have used the office of a deacon
With diligence and faithfulness, with simplicity and cheerfulness; taking good care of the minister and poor, and of the discipline of God's house:
purchase to themselves a good degree;
not an higher office, as that of presbytery or episcopacy, which is a sense calculated to serve a hierarchy; nor a degree in glory and happiness hereafter; but rather an increase of gifts and grace; or a degree of respect and honour in the church: or the sense is, they possess and enjoy, which is the meaning of the word rendered "purchase", a very honourable office in the church; and which is so to them, they using it well, and discharging it in an honourable manner; unless the apostle should design what the Jews called (atwnmyhmd agrd) , "a degree of faith": F2 but that is expressed in the next clause:
and great boldness in the faith, which is in Christ
either in the exercise of the grace of faith at the throne of grace; or in asserting the doctrine of faith before men; and in reproving either for error or immorality: all which may be boldly done by those who use this office well.
F2 Zohar in Exod. fol. 36. 3.