The saying is sure:[a] whoever aspires to the office of bishop[b] desires a noble task. 2 Now a bishop[c] must be above reproach, married only once,[d] temperate, sensible, respectable, hospitable, an apt teacher, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, and not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, keeping his children submissive and respectful in every way— 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how can he take care of God’s church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may be puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace and the snare of the devil.
Qualifications of Deacons
8 Deacons likewise must be serious, not double-tongued, not indulging in much wine, not greedy for money; 9 they must hold fast to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And let them first be tested; then, if they prove themselves blameless, let them serve as deacons. 11 Women[e] likewise must be serious, not slanderers, but temperate, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons be married only once,[f] and let them manage their children and their households well; 13 for those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and great boldness in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.
The Mystery of Our Religion
14 I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these instructions to you so that, 15 if I am delayed, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth. 16 Without any doubt, the mystery of our religion is great:
He[g] was revealed in flesh,
vindicated[h] in spirit,[i]
seen by angels,
proclaimed among Gentiles,
believed in throughout the world,
taken up in glory.
a. 1 Timothy 3:1 Some interpreters place these words at the end of the previous paragraph. Other ancient authorities read The saying is commonly accepted
b. 1 Timothy 3:1 Or overseer
c. 1 Timothy 3:2 Or an overseer
d. 1 Timothy 3:2 Gk the husband of one wife
e. 1 Timothy 3:11 Or Their wives, or Women deacons
f. 1 Timothy 3:12 Gk be husbands of one wife
g. 1 Timothy 3:16 Gk Who; other ancient authorities read God; others, Which
h. 1 Timothy 3:16 Or justified
i. 1 Timothy 3:16 Or by the Spirit
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.