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1 Timothy 3 - WANTED: Godly leaders

Little boys might want to be a farmer, fireman or ball player when they grow up. How many aspire to be godly leaders in the church?

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1 Timothy 3 Summary

As twenty-first century Americans, we have a distrust for institutions. This isn't without reason, for it's almost impossible to find a institution anywhere that doesn't have some sort of major flaw in its history.

Unfortunately, this is true of the Church as well; it's all too easy to think of example after example of ways the Church as an institution has caused harm over the centuries.

So our reaction is to want to privatize our religion, to just break away from the inevitable sins of the institution and form my own little church consisting of me and Jesus.

But such individualism has never been a mark of God's people. We are designed and created to live in community, and communities require order. God has ordained elders and deacons to provide that order, and in this chapter, Paul instructs Pastor Timothy in what sort of Godly men should fill these positions.

Dig Deeper

This chapter begins with a major assumption: that there are some men in the church who aspire to be elders (overseers - v1). Just as young boys often aspire to be professional athletes or big time farmers, our young men ought to be aspiring to serve the Lord's church and preparing themselves to do so with the same intensity that they practice playing ball or working to build up the farm.

Most of the qualifications listed here have to do with a man's character, not his ability.

The ironic thing is that in asking men to serve as an elder or deacon, the most common objection is along the lines of "I don't know how," or "I'm not very good at..."

The Bible's answer is that if a man is showing faithfulness in all aspects of his life then God will show faithfulness to him as he serves the church by giving him the strength and ability to do so.

This passage does have one ability based qualification: a man must have the ability to teach (v2). Certainly some knowledge about what the Bible teaches is necessary to teach other Christians, but at the same time, a man need not be an expert. In fact, sometimes the best way to grow in your own knowledge of a subject is to teach it to others!

AAA Prayer:

  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our loving and faithful Father, who calls us into His household, the Church, to live in fellowship with Him

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that godly men will aspire to these callings.




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