#DailyDevotion What Sort Of Man Should Serve The Lord?
1 Tim. 38In the same way the deacons should be serious, sincere in speech, not drinking a lot of wine, not greedy. 9With a clear conscience they should keep the hidden truth they believe. 10They, too, should first be tested; then if no fault is found in them, they should serve. llIn the same way the wives should be serious, not slandering, not drinking too much wine, but trustworthy in every way. 12A deacon should be the husband of one wife and should manage his children and his home well. 13When they have served well, they gain a good standing and can talk very confidently of their faith in Christ Jesus.
Like yesterday, we should remember the names for those who serve in the Church in the office of the Holy Ministry were fluid in the apostolic age. Paul picks up on the theme of deacons now. These men were probably our equivalent of assistant or associate pastors. Like the overseers, they were to be chosen based on their character. Paul again lists of their qualifications. They are basically the same as the overseers.
They should be serious. What does that mean? The rest of the sentence in the Greek expounds upon that. It means they should be sincere or not double tongued. They shouldn’t be known for lying. It means they shouldn’t be known for drinking in excess. It means making lots of money and hoarding it shouldn’t the focus of their attention. That is what it means to be serious.
Paul says they must hold the mystery of faith with a clean conscience. That is to say they should be sure and certain in their own minds that Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Old Testament in the flesh. He died and rose again and ascended into heaven. They must be certain they believe Jesus Christ and his sacrifice on the cross the atoning sacrifice for sins, for the Jews and for all people everywhere. Paul says they should be tested. What should they be tested for? They should be tested for their character and their knowledge of the faith. This is parallel to the overseer who should not be a recent convert.
Paul again talks about being the husband of but one wife. He is not to engage in polygamy. He is supposed to be male. He like the overseer is to run his own household well. That doesn’t mean nothing ever goes wrong but he is to make sure when it does, discipline is maintained. If he can’t even manage his own house how can he manage God’s Church? The wives of both overseers and deacons should also be serious. Again what follows that describes what serious means. It means not to be drunkard or heavy drinker. It means not to be a ‘diabalos’ (from whence we get the term diabolical) i.e. someone who slanders other people, not a gossip. Instead their wives should be trustworthy in every way. Lots of people come to the pastor or assistant pastor with their troubles. They and the pastor don’t need them telling everyone about what they come to the pastor with.
Like the overseers, such men are gifts from our Lord Jesus Christ. (Eph. 4:11) The Lord Jesus loves us and wants us to be fed spiritually and built up in the faith by such men. He gives them to us so we may grow in faith and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. They are accountable to him for our souls. Because of this, we should submit to them when they correct us and teach us with the Lord’s word for that is profitable for us to do so. Jesus wants us to persevere in the faith and we do best when we have such men leading us in the narrow path.
Heavenly Father, your son Jesus Christ at your right hand gives us the gifts of pastors that we may be brought to faith and be preserved in that faith unto life every lasting. Continually give us such men as Paul describes that we may grow and be preserved in the faith and may our hearts always be thankful for them. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.