1 Timothy 3:1-13 – August 15
The Bible is basically a compilation of love letters from our Father in heaven, His loving words breathed onto each page. Over the next several months, as we study the letters of the Bible, Galatians through Jude, I pray that You will experience His eternal love in new ways and that it will transform you. These letters were written by Christian leaders, most of them by Paul, to establish and grow the Christian Church. For us, they are filled with love and gold nuggets on living a Christian life. Join along in our study by reading today’s scripture, journaling on it using SOAP, then sharing how God spoke to you today. Below is the NIV version of today’s reading, then below that is a SOAP from one of our study leaders. The Comments section on our website is an open forum for sharing, requesting prayer, and asking questions.
1 Timothy 3:1-13 – Qualifications for Overseers and Deacons
Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task. 2 Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect. 5 (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. 7 He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.
8 In the same way, deacons are to be worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine, and not pursuing dishonest gain. 9 They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 They must first be tested; and then if there is nothing against them, let them serve as deacons.
11 In the same way, the women are to be worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything.
12 A deacon must be faithful to his wife and must manage his children and his household well. 13 Those who have served well gain an excellent standing and great assurance in their faith in Christ Jesus.
A Servant’s Heart | Becky Newman
1 Timothy 3:13
In today’s reading, Paul is specifically talking about the qualities pastors and deacons should have. “Deacon” translates to servant and, in this case, refers to a servant of the church. Not all are called to this level of servitude, but to be more like Jesus, we are all called to serve Him which means serving others to glorify Him. I think that verse 13 applies to all who serve God.
In serving God, I hope to hear those words: well done, good and faithful servant! I’m confused by “excellent standing” in this verse, because it seems to me that someone who serves well cannot be doing it for personal gains and standing. Those two qualities just don’t jive and would seem to hold back a person from serving God well. Maybe it’s an excellent standing among others seeing what a person after God’s heart looks like, but still, if that’s the goal of serving, it seems like that would bring conceit and self-righteousness. Nonetheless, great assurance in my faith is something that sounds like a good benefit of serving!
God, help my heart to be right in serving You. Though I don’t completely understand the verse You gave me today, I know that serving You will grow my faith and make me more like Jesus.
The Discover One Thing main website continues to follow the Life Journal Reading Plan which covers the whole Bible in one year. Click HERE to check out today’s Discover One Thing post.