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Qualifications for Oversight and Service

Trustworthy is the saying: “If any man aspires to the office of overseer,[a] he desires a good work.” An overseer, then, must be beyond criticism—the husband of one wife, clear-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not addicted to wine, not violent but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money, managing his own household well, keeping his children under control with all respectfulness. (But if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s community?) He must not be a new believer,[b] or he may become puffed up and fall into the same judgment as the devil. Furthermore, he must have a good reputation with those outside, so that he will not fall into disgrace and the devil’s trap.

Servant-leaders likewise must be dignified, not double-speaking, not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain. They must keep hold of the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 Also let them first be tested—then let those who are blameless serve as servant-leaders. 11 Women likewise must be dignified, not backbiting; clear-minded, trustworthy in every respect. 12 Let servant-leaders be husbands of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. 13 For those who have served well as servant-leaders gain for themselves a good standing and great confidence in the faith that is in Messiah Yeshua.

14 These things I write to you, hoping to come to you shortly. 15 But if I delay, I write so you may know how one ought to conduct himself in the household of God—which is the community of the living God, a pillar and foundation of truth. 16 Now beyond question, great is the mystery of godliness:

He was revealed in the flesh,
    Vindicated in the Spirit,
        Seen by angels,
Proclaimed among the nations,
    Trusted throughout the world,
        Taken up in glory.


  1. 1 Timothy 3:1 cf. Num. 4:16(LXX); 31:14(LXX).
  2. 1 Timothy 3:6 Lit. newly planted (Grk. neofutos).