1 Timothy 3 The Passion Translation (TPT)
Leaders in the Church
3 If any of you[a] aspires to be an overseer[b] in the church; you have set your heart toward a noble ambition, for the word is true! 2 Yet an elder needs to be one who is without blame before others.
He should be one whose heart is for his wife alone and not another woman.[c] He should be recognized as one who is sensible, and well-behaved, and living a disciplined life. He should be a “spiritual shepherd” who has the gift of teaching,[d] and is known for his hospitality.
4 His heart should be set on guiding his household with wisdom and dignity;[g] bringing up his children to worship with devotion and purity. 5 For if he’s unable to properly lead his own household well, how could he properly lead God’s household?
6 He should not be a new disciple[h] who would be vulnerable to living in the clouds of conceit and fall into pride, making him easy prey for Satan.[i] 7 He should be respected by those who are unbelievers, having a beautiful testimony among them[j] so that he will not fall into the traps of Satan and be disgraced.
8 And in the same way the deacons[k] must be those who are pure and true to their word, not addicted to wine, or with greedy eyes on the contributions.[l] 9 Instead, they must faithfully embrace the mysteries of faith while keeping a clean conscience. 10 And each of them must be found trustworthy according to these standards before they are given the responsibility to minister as servant-leaders without blame.
12 A deacon’s heart must be toward his wife alone, leading his children and household with excellence. 13 For those who serve in this way will obtain an honorable reputation[p] for themselves and a greater right to speak boldly in the faith that comes from the anointing of Jesus!
14 I’m writing all this with the expectation of seeing you soon. 15 But if I’m delayed in coming, you’ll already have these instructions on how to conduct the affairs of the church of the living God, his very household and the supporting pillar and firm foundation of the truth.
The Mystery of Righteousness
16 For the mystery of righteousness is truly amazing!
1 Timothy 3 New International Version (NIV)
Qualifications for Overseers and Deacons
3 Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task. 2 Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full[a] respect. 5 (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. 7 He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.
8 In the same way, deacons[b] are to be worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine, and not pursuing dishonest gain. 9 They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 They must first be tested; and then if there is nothing against them, let them serve as deacons.
11 In the same way, the women[c] are to be worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything.
12 A deacon must be faithful to his wife and must manage his children and his household well. 13 Those who have served well gain an excellent standing and great assurance in their faith in Christ Jesus.
Reasons for Paul’s Instructions
14 Although I hope to come to you soon, I am writing you these instructions so that, 15 if I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth. 16 Beyond all question, the mystery from which true godliness springs is great:
He appeared in the flesh,