TOPIC: A Good Report Necessary (DCLM Daily Manna 26 March 2021)
TEXT: 1 Timothy 3:1-13 (KJV)
1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;
9 Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.
10 And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless.
11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.
12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.
13 For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.
KEY VERSE: “Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.” – (1 Timothy 3:7)
The Church of God has officials saddled with responsibilities of building up and maintaining the Body of Christ. Different names may be used to depict the officials depending on the congregation. While the organisations in the world emphasise academic and technical qualifications, God emphasises spiritual qualifications, piety and righteous living above eloquence, social finesse and certificates.
Our passage opened with the approval of the desire for the position of an elder (a bishop) in the church. It is indeed a mark of growth and responsibility. God wants all His children to grow spiritually as they grow physically. The desire for the post of a bishop and other positions in the church however is not without strict conditions. The candidate must be without any fault (social, financial moral or legal). He or she must be monogamous, careful and cautious, inoffensive, openhanded, openhearted and able to teach. He does not drink any form of alcohol, does not fight and is not covetous or violent in words or actions. He brings up a godly family with converted children and is experienced in spiritual matters. The would-be church official should be thoroughly examined before being appointed. These qualifications apply to both males and females.
In the church of God today, if anyone occupies a position for which his lifestyle and the Scriptures do not qualify him, he has no stamp of approval from God and the result will be unpleasant in eternity.
The qualifications listed for those who would hold church offices are not exclusive to those categories of people but to all who would want to be in the courts of heaven at last. Nothing short of a total life of righteousness and piety is required to get there. Are you, by God’s own standard, qualified to enter heaven?
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
Self-delusion in church work is self-disqualification.
THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR:
DCLM Daily Manna was written by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi; is the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church situated at KM 42 on the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Nigeria. https://dclm.org/