1 Timothy 3:1-7
(1) This is a truthful saying: Whoever desires to function as a church overseer (episcopate, possibly referring to a lead elder, pastor, or bishop) desires a vitally important work of ministry.
(2) Church overseers must live a good life (above reproach), be sexually pure in marriage (a man of one woman), be a sound and stable thinker, self-controlled, respected by others, hospitable, able to teach God’s word, (3) not addicted to alcohol, not violent but gentle, not argumentative, and not controlled by money. (4) He must care for (manage) his own family well and keep the children living in proper respect and obedience. (5) If a man does not know how to care for his own family, how can he oversee God’s church? (6) A church overseer must not be a new believer, because he can become filled with pride and experience the same judgment as Satan. (7) He must also have a good reputation with unbelievers, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.
1 Timothy 3:8-13
(8) In the same way, church deacons (servants) must be people deserving of respect, sincere, not addicted to alcohol, or striving for personal gain in a dishonest way. (9) They must hold strong to the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience. (10) Deacons must first be tested, and then if they are found to be worthy, they can serve in the church.
(11) In the same way, female deacons (possibly wives of deacons) must be worthy of respect, not slanderers or gossips, but sound in character and faithful in everything.
(12) Deacons must be faithful to their wives and able to care for (manage) their own family and children properly. (13) Those who serve well gain an excellent standing in the church and have great assurance in their faith in Jesus Christ.
The Great Truths of Godliness
1 Timothy 3:14-16
(14) Although I hope to come to visit you in Ephesus soon, I am writing you the instructions in this letter so that (15) in case I am delayed you will know how people should behave in God’s family—which is the church of the living God, the strong pillar and foundation of the truth.
(16) Beyond all question, we confess the great mystery (deep truth) of godliness: Jesus appeared in a body (became human), was declared righteous by the Holy Spirit, was seen by angels, was proclaimed among the nations, was believed in throughout the world, and was taken up to heaven in majestic glory.