(16 verses, 1:50 to read)
What I am about to READ
Paul’s instructions for good order of faithful men in the churches.
MARK & LEARN
1-7: God through Paul here provides many various qualifications for “overseers” or “bishops”. The sum of all is, perhaps, in verse 2: he must be above reproach. This includes all those places in life where God has placed such a man who has the godly desire to be a pastor: at home, at work, in society.
8-13: Similar qualifications are given for deacons in these verses. These would include male deacons and, perhaps, because of verse 11, be those women who assist in attend to the temporal cares of the needy as Phoebe (Romans 16:1) appears to be. It’s also very likely that verse 11 does refer, as translated in the ESV, to the wives of the deacons since verse 12 refers likewise.
14-16: These beautiful words of Paul reinforce the fact that the Faith is of no one’s own individual interpretation. Not even the “who” of the workers of the Body of Christ is left to one’s own interpretation. We are reminded of II Peter 2: “…knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation.”
The second half of verse 15 seems to be a sort of early creed confessing the “mystery of godliness”.
Dear Father in heaven, we thank you for the great gift of pastors. Keep them from temptation and grant them steadfastness of faith and courage. In Christ’s holy name. Amen.
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-Pastor Weslie Odom