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,
1 Timothy 3 New Living Translation (NLT)
Leaders in the Church
3 This is a trustworthy saying: “If someone aspires to be a church leader,[a] he desires an honorable position.” 2 So a church leader must be a man whose life is above reproach. He must be faithful to his wife.[b] He must exercise self-control, live wisely, and have a good reputation. He must enjoy having guests in his home, and he must be able to teach. 3 He must not be a heavy drinker[c] or be violent. He must be gentle, not quarrelsome, and not love money. 4 He must manage his own family well, having children who respect and obey him. 5 For if a man cannot manage his own household, how can he take care of God’s church?
6 A church leader must not be a new believer, because he might become proud, and the devil would cause him to fall.[d] 7 Also, people outside the church must speak well of him so that he will not be disgraced and fall into the devil’s trap.
8 In the same way, deacons must be well respected and have integrity. They must not be heavy drinkers or dishonest with money. 9 They must be committed to the mystery of the faith now revealed and must live with a clear conscience. 10 Before they are appointed as deacons, let them be closely examined. If they pass the test, then let them serve as deacons.
11 In the same way, their wives[e] must be respected and must not slander others. They must exercise self-control and be faithful in everything they do.
12 A deacon must be faithful to his wife, and he must manage his children and household well. 13 Those who do well as deacons will be rewarded with respect from others and will have increased confidence in their faith in Christ Jesus.
The Truths of Our Faith
14 I am writing these things to you now, even though I hope to be with you soon, 15 so that if I am delayed, you will know how people must conduct themselves in the household of God. This is the church of the living God, which is the pillar and foundation of the truth.
16 Without question, this is the great mystery of our faith[f]:
1 Timothy 3 American Standard Version (ASV)
3 [a]Faithful is the saying, If a man seeketh the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2 The [b]bishop therefore must be without reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, orderly, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 [c]no brawler, no striker; but gentle, not contentious, no lover of money; 4 one that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (but if a man knoweth not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) 6 not a novice, lest being puffed up he fall into the [d]condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover he must have good testimony from them that are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil. 8 Deacons in like manner must be grave, not double-tongued, 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 serve as deacons, if they be blameless. 11 Women in like manner must be grave, not slanderers, temperate, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons be husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 13 For they that have served well as deacons gain to themselves a good standing, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.
14 These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly; 15 but if I tarry long, that thou mayest know [e]how men ought to behave themselves in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and [f]ground of the truth. 16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness;
1 Timothy 3 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
Guidelines for Leaders in the Church
3 This is a statement that can be trusted: If anyone sets his heart on being a bishop,[a] he desires something excellent. 2 A bishop must have a good reputation. He must have only one wife, be sober, use good judgment, be respectable, be hospitable, and be able to teach. 3 He must not drink excessively or be a violent person, but he must be gentle. He must not be quarrelsome or love money. 4 He must manage his own family well. His children should respectfully obey him. 5 (If a man doesn’t know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) 6 He must not be a new Christian, or he might become arrogant like the devil and be condemned. 7 People who are not Christians must speak well of him, or he might become the victim of disgraceful insults that the devil sets as traps for him.
8 Deacons[b] must also be of good character. They must not be two-faced or addicted to alcohol. They must not use shameful ways to make money. 9 They must have clear consciences about possessing the mystery of the Christian faith. 10 First, a person must be evaluated. Then, if he has a good reputation, he may become a deacon.
11 Their wives must also be of good character. They must not be gossips, but they must control their tempers and be trustworthy in every way.
12 A deacon must have only one wife. Deacons must manage their children and their families well. 13 Those deacons who serve well gain an excellent reputation and will have confidence as a result of their faith in Christ Jesus.
14 I hope to visit you soon. However, I’m writing this to you 15 in case I’m delayed. I want you to know how people who are members of God’s family must live. God’s family is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth.
16 The mystery that gives us our reverence for God is acknowledged to be great:
He[c] appeared in his human nature,
1 Timothy 3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Overseers and Deacons
3 It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of [a]overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. 2 [b]An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not addicted to wine [c]or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. 4 He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity 5 (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?), 6 and not a new convert, so that he will not become conceited and fall into the condemnation [d]incurred by the devil. 7 And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he will not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
8 Deacons likewise must be men of dignity, not [e]double-tongued, [f]or addicted to much wine [g]or fond of sordid gain, 9 but holding to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 These men must also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons if they are beyond reproach. 11 [h]Women must likewise be dignified, not malicious gossips, but temperate, faithful in all things. 12 Deacons must be husbands of only one wife, and [i]good managers of their children and their own households. 13 For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a [j]high standing and great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.
14 I am writing these things to you, hoping to come to you before long; 15 but [k]in case I am delayed, I write so that you will know how [l]one ought to conduct himself in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth. 16 By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness:
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