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1 Timothy 3 (ESV)
Qualifications for Overseers
3 The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.
Qualifications for Deacons
8 Deacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued, not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain. 9 They must hold the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And let them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. 11 Their wives likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. 13 For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.
The Mystery of Godliness
14 I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these things to you so that, 15 if I delay, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth. 16 Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.
Although these qualities are specifically applied to leaders, why are they important to all Christians?
Lord God, these are evil times. The devil seems to be making progress as he infiltrates the world with deception and hatred. Thank You that Your Word and Your Church is a compass for the faithful in these turbulent times. Since the church on earth has human leaders, it is so very important that the leaders represent You well. I pray for the character, ethics, and morales of Pastor Mike and all pastors so that they are not easily swayed, distracted, or tempted by Satan. They are targets. The devil continually tries to lure them in order to lead the entire congregation off course. I pray for all church leaders to also live faithful lives to give them credibility and provide examples for others to follow. Lord, during these times, all Christians are leaders of the faith. If leadership is about influence, all of us have influence, not only at church but at home, work and in the community. Never let my life be a distraction or be become a barrier for others to come to you. Instead, help me to be a person of godly character. teach me to be self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, dignified, loyal, trustworthy, sensible, and faithful to my family, and to Your family so that I can be used by You. Fill me with Your wisdom, love, and faithfulness so that I can influence those who are wounded, hurt, broken to find healing in You. I know that a godly character is a challenge and will be a lifelong process. Lord, I ask you to help me to live by Your Spirit to live up to your high standards so that I can influence others for You. Amen