First Baptist Church Lubbock
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
- worship. transform. serve.
To be a deacon in the New Testament church is a special, biblical calling of God. There are two officers in the church that are set aside in ordination, “the laying of hands”. They are pastor and deacon. As lay persons, we are privileged to share in God’s work in our local church and work alongside our ordained pastoral staff. Happy is the church when there is love, harmony, and respect between the two.
In Acts 6:3-6 as the nascent church was growing, there was conflict between church members, and men were chosen to be peacemakers:
“Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them…they chose Stephen, a man full of faith & of the Holy Spirit also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. They presented these men to the apostles who prayed and laid hands on them.”
At the time of Paul’s Philippian letter in AD 61 Paul wrote, “To all the saints in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons…” Phil. 1:1
Shortly after this, Paul wrote to Timothy, and included in his letter admonitions and requirements for deacons and elders (pastors, overseers).
“Deacons, likewise are to be men worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine and not pursuing dishonest gain. They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with clear conscience. They must first be tested and then if there is nothing against them, let them serve as deacons. In the same way their wives are to be women worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything. A deacon must be the husband of one wife and must manage his children and his household well. Those who have served well gain an excellent standing and great assurance in their faith in Christ Jesus.” 1 Timothy 3:8-11
In addition to these requirements, we also hold that the general moral requirements for pastors and overseers are not only attainable but desirous for our deacon body. (1 Timothy 3:1-7, 1 Peter 5:1-4, Acts 20:28, & Titus 1:5-9).
We also have the privilege of fulfilling and modeling two of the most God-blessed disciplines of the Christian faith, tithing and witnessing.