Church Boss or Servant Leader?
A Deacon should not be addicted to substances such as alcohol. And they shouldn’t be greedy, or pursue dishonest gain. A Deacon should be tested, to make sure there are no offenses against them.
A Deacon should not be a slanderer or have malicious speech, but instead should be temperate, sober minded, trustworthy and faithful in all things. (See 1 Timothy 3)
To be sure, this week we’re going to roll out all the details surrounding the role and responsibilities of a deacon in the church. However, before we do that, we need to ask ourselves, “What is a Deacon?“
What Is a Deacon?
A quick word study shows that “deacon” is an English derivative of the Greek word “diakonos” (dee-ak’-on-os). This word means a waiter, servant or someone who performs or administers a service.
Simply put, a deacon is a servant.
But also note that this word “deacon” or “diakonos” is used as a masculine or feminine noun. (Strongs NT, 1249) Which begs the question, why use the word “deaconess“? (More to come on that subject, later in the week.)
Deeper study reveals that the root of this word diakonos is this idea to “thoroughly raise up dust by moving in a hurry, and so to minister” or more specifically, “to kick up dust,” when running an errand. (Helps Word-Studies 1223, WP, 1, 162)
Deacons are servants who will get up and go at a moments notice. If there’s a job to be done, deacons will be on it so fast that they’ll leave you in the dust, literally.
Bible Study Note
Here we discover yet another proof on how important it is not to just read our Bibles, but to study them. Look at how much we can learn from pausing on a single word and asking, “What does this really mean?“
By doing this, we gain the ability to remove our 2016 Western worldview and travel back to the Greco-Roman world. And now we can read this passage through Timothy’s eyes, and fully grasp what being a deacon in the church, is really all about.
Deacons Are Servants
Deacons are people who serve in a physical or tangible sense. At the time this was written, Timothy was in the process of rooting out false teachers. He also held the oversight of pastors and elders in dozens of home churches.
Moreover, he likely had a variety of teaching and discipleship responsibilities. Deacons would have been the hands and feet of this early Ephesian church.
These servants would have been an essential component to aid in Timothy’s ministry.
What to know more?
As I stated above, this week, we’ll be exploring the role and responsibilities of deacons in the early church and in today’s church. Click the green “Subscribe Now” button below, to receive these upcoming posts, straight to your inbox.
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CAN I GET YOUR FEEDBACK?
What do you know about deacons? What has been your experience with deacons in the church?