Summary: A study of Deacons: Definition, Divine Order, and Designation.

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Special Servants

1 Timothy 3:8–13


• Last week (insert names) was set before you a deacon.

• What an exciting time! To see a church grow spiritually.

• Elders have asked me to speak on this subject.


I. Definition

A. Our English work for Deacon is translated from the Greek word “diokonos” meaning to serve or servant.

B. Quotation: (Hibert) “The ‘diakonos’ is always one who serves on Christ’s behalf and continues Christ’s service for the outer and inner man. He is concerned with the salvation of men. It is demanding and consuming service, but it has Christ’s sure promise of reward: “My father will honor the one who serves me.” John 12:26

C. Deacon is used to describe one who served a person worthy of service. (Kings, authorities, etc.)

1. It was used to describe:

a. Christ (Rom. 15:8)

b. The apostles (2 Cor. 3:6)

c. Evangelists (1 Tim 4:6)

d. Any faithful Christian (John 12:26)

e. Women servants in the church (Rom. 16:1)

2. As a general description the word does not necessarily describe the person but the work of the person.

Transition–1 Tim. 8ff shows that the deacons talked about here are a special group. Special Servants set apart for service.

II. Divine Order

A. The First Deacons? Acts 6:1–7

1. Instituted by the Apostles.

2. Needed to serve the needs of the congregation.

3. Enabled the Apostles to focus on spreading the word and prayer.

B. Deacons are Men of God selected for service by qualification.

1. To be selected as a Special Servant he must meet all qualifications.

a. Worthy of Respect.

b. Sincere.

c. Not indulging in much wine.

d. Not pursuing dishonest gain.

e. Keep hold of the deep truth with a clear conscience.

f. Husband of one wife.

g. Manage his children and house well.

2. Not only must the man in consideration meet these qualifications, his wife must also be qualified.

C. Deacons wives are special servants along with them, therefore they must also meet God’s requirements.

1. Worthy of respect.

2. Not malicious talkers.

3. Temperate.

4. Trustworthy in all things.

III. Designation

A. One is qualified to be placed into the ministry of a Deacon once he and his wife have been tested in these areas.

B. The Greek word for tested is “dokimazo” meaning to put to the test, examine.

1. Used in regard to metals (i.e. testing gold).

2. Illustration: When one finds what he believes to be a precious metal, like gold, he submits them to a test to see if what he has found and believes to be gold, is actually the real thing. If the metal in question stands up to the test, contains all the elements necessary to complete the make up of gold, then it is declared to be gold.

3. The same is true for the one considered for the role of deacon. The standards are set by God and do not change. It is no small mistake to ignore God’s qualifications for the leaders of His church.

C. Once tested, if there is nothing against him.

1. Finding no condemnation as to the requirements of the test.

2. Our idea fo the best man for the job may not necessarily be God’s nor meet God’s qualifications.


• When deciding upon leadership for our congregation it is imperative that we not let personal dreams or aspirations get in the way of God’s plan.

• To some’s great disappointment one may be passed by and another person chosen.

• We must always allow room for the providence of God.

• Does this mean that no church at anytime, anywhere has selected a man who is not qualified to serve as elder or deacon? Or that men who do meet the qualifications have been passed over? Of course not. . .

• But through it all, God will rule over the wrong that men do because, “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him.” Rom 8:28

• Let us always at all times, in all things, strive to live and act upon God’s divine plan He has for His church.

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