1 Timothy 3:2-7 Message 18
We have seen that men who desire the office of a Bishop, desire a good work.
1 Timothy 3:1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
They, according to the meaning of the words, are pursuing, reaching out for the calling of God into the office of a Bishop. I, and I believe all other preachers, thank the Lord for every one of you men who, as you sit in the congregation and listen to the teaching and preaching, are asking God to put you in this place of leadership. I believe that some of you are desiring this good work and, that being the case, we must turn to a most important issue, that is the –
c). Requirements for the character of the man who the Lord calls to this work –
1 Timothy 3:2-7 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
You must be –
1 Timothy 3:2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
(a). Blameless. not able to be taken hold of, without reproach
A man who the entire community respects, even if some disagree with his faith in God and His Word.
We see he has to be the –
(b). Husband of one wife. A one woman man.
This rules out polygamy (Two wives at one time), as marriages such as this were not prevalent at this time – the issue was divorce. The pastor must accept the responsibility given by God to be the loving husband and leader of his family as noted –
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
One of the most serious problems we have today in marriages is that the husband does not understand his accountability to God for leading his family, leaving the decision making to his wife. We must remember the consequences of ignoring responsibilities which are made perfectly clear through the account of Adam submitting to the will of his wife, Eve, instead of the will of God.
The man’s character is what he brings in ministry to others and he must protect himself at all times. He must be –
(c). Vigilant. Nhfaleon
Wise use of caution. It means to completely abstain from wine in the performance of his ministry,which isa positive reference to character of the ministry in his ministry as commanded of the priest in –
Leviticus 10:8-11 And the LORD spake unto Aaron, saying, Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations: And that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; And that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the LORD hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses.
We must remember that the pastor is prepared for ministry at all times.
(d). Sober. Sofron Knowing the glory of God and the necessity to accurately teach and preach His Word to God’s people.
2 Corinthians 5:13-15 For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause. For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
You have heard it said that “some are so Heavenly minded that they are no earthly good”. Paul spoke to this –
2 Corinthians 12:4-6 How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities. For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.
We know the marvelous grace of God in our lives and our personal blessings and rejoicing in His presence, but we must also know what purpose it would be to share these experiences with others – is it to the glory of God or to the exaltation of self?
There are times that teaching and preaching can become a contest – a comparison of spiritual experiences with others. The pastor must be careful in this!
(e). Of good behaviour.
Well ordering his private and public life, Refer to –
Psalm 101:1 A Psalm of David. I will sing of mercy and judgment: unto thee, O LORD, will I sing.
David glorified the Lord because of the mercy and judgment of God had shown in his life. He testified here how he would live the life the Lord had given and blessed him with –
Psalm 101:2-8 I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way. O when wilt thou come unto me?
I will walk within my house with a perfect heart.
I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes:
I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. A froward heart shall depart from me:
I will not know a wicked person. Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer.
Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me.
He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight.
I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD.
David determined to live his life as a man of God – what God would expect from a man after His own heart!
Each of us, being saved through the Love of God and sacrifice of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, should desire no less for our lives!
This is no less that what Paul wrote to the church in Rome –
Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
(f). Given to hospitality. Filoxenos loving strangers.
Prepared to give of self
(g). Apt to teach. Prepared and able to teach
Relying on the Word – Know its relevance in your life
Ready to teach the Word
Reasoning through the Word, which means he must understand it.
2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
The man must be virtuous and he also must be –
1 Timothy 3:3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
(a). Not given to wine. Paroinon
The simple explanation is found in the following Scripture –
Proverbs 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.
The results of which are related in –
Isaiah 28:7-8 But they also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are out of the way; the priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment. For all tables are full of vomit and filthiness, so that there is no place clean.
While some argue almost endlessly on this point, my question to you is simple “Do you want to be wise”? No excuses, Yes or No?
I understand all of the arguments – I justified my own drinking after I got saved. I was raised in a family that used alcohol often. I was a regular drinker and I enjoyed it. Not long after I got saved, I met with a friend and he was coming with me to our house for dinner. My friend was not a Christian. I stopped at the store to get some beer and he said to me “I thought Christians did not drink”. I replied to him “We drink, but not too much”. I felt like I had been stabbed in the heart and I was broken. The feeling was new to me, but I knew exactly where it came from, the Holy Spirit used the Sword of the Lord, His Word, and cut my heart. I kicked against the truth but He would not let me alone. I admitted that my excuses and reasoning were exactly that and decided that I wanted to simply be “wise”. I learned the sweet peace of submission and confession and learned that I had been occupying my time with that which I did not need at all. Joy comes from the Lord, not from the bottle!
Notice how these actions are associated with one another. They present a very unlikable, ungodly man!
(b). No striker. Plhkths Not striking to create movement, not quick tempered, not striking back.
Have you known leaders that push and prod those around them in order to accomplish their purpose. The ‘Striker’ here is what we would call a bully, constantly abusing physically or verbally.
You also see the man given to drinking and bullying, is self seeking, endeavouring to surround himself with the riches of this world, but not so the man who would be a bishop. He is –
(c). Not greedy of filthy lucre. Aisxrokerdhs
Philippians 4:11-13 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
He is to trust God that His provision is what is needed to accomplish His purpose
(d). Patient. Forbearance/yielding/ not domineering
(e). Not a brawler. Amacos This word translated ‘brawler’ means not peaceable, argumentative, sowing discord
James 3:13-16 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.
(f). Not covetous. Afilarguros Not a lover of money
He understands that he needs only what the Lord provides for him to accomplish the ministry of God unto the people. Faithful service to the Lord is not measured by the accumulation of material goods!
We see also that the pastor must be not only virtuous, and selfless, he must be –
1 Timothy 3:4-7 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
(a). To his family. One that rules his house well.
This man must lead his family and have the respect of his wife and his children, not only willingly following his instructions, but seeking the wisdom for leadership from him that he has learned from the Lord through his daily communion with God in prayer and Bible study. He must teach his family by word and deed to have this personal relationship with God in order that they may lead the families as they are established under the guidance of the Lord.
The family must glorify God in the community.
(b). To his calling Not a novice.
“…Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil…”
Literal – newly planted – not given time to grow.
And dedicated –
(c). To his community Has a good report of those in
“…Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
This man, virtuous, selfless, and dedicated, will be used of God to make a difference in the world for the glory of God. Will you be this man? Will you pray for your pastor to be this man?