1 Timothy 3:12-16
1 Tim 3:12 (KJB)
Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.
Here the Scriptures gives two requirements for the office of deacon. They too must be the husband of one wife which means they are not to be divorced and remarried. It also means that the deacon is not to be a single man. When the churches acquiesced to the Christian feminist movement, they never answered a simple question. How can a woman deacon or bishop be the husband of one wife? Then they too are to have children which are in subjection to their rule which shows they are obedient. They are also to rule their own houses well and that does not only mean the people in it but as head of the house they are responsible for a good testimony to friends and neighbors, even to those who are unbelievers. They should also show wisdom in handling situations and finances. If they show they can handle these properly, then they would be able to transfer the same wisdom in handling the affairs of the church.
1 Tim 3:13 (KJB)
For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.
Have used the office of a deacon - Having served
Purchase - Acquire
Degree - As of a good standing or reputation
Boldness - Courage or fearlessness
Paul ends the section on deacons. Here he commends those who have served the office well because in doing the ministry correctly, they would also have acquired to themselves a good reputation with those both inside the church and those on the outside. When they continued to exercise the office properly, this would cause a person to become much more bold in the faith simply because they are acting on the faith they believe in. The more a Christian gets involved with the Lord’s work, the bolder they become because it takes spiritual fortitude to take the Gospel of Christ into a hostile, God hating world. This is the demeanor of missionaries who cared only for souls and not for their own lives.
1 Tim 3:14 (KJB)
These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly:
Paul writing from Macedonia had desired to come to Ephesus in a short time probably to further explain and help Timothy get settled in as Pastor and to answer any questions which may arise. It is not known whether Paul was able to make the journey to Ephesus.
1 Tim 3:15 (KJB)
But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
Ground - Foundation
Since this letter was written to Timothy but would have been read to those in the church, Paul wanted them to know that he may have to tarry long in Macedonia. Many a time Paul had wanted to visit a group of believers but he was diverted to another area. His desire was to visit those he knew and the churches he helped form but that was not always possible. He writes to them and tells them that even though he may not make it to see them, he tells them that they should know how to conduct themselves in the house of God. He has written concerning the offices and also how the women are to behave so he was confident that until he came, they would conduct themselves as becoming Christians. He states that the house of God is the church of the living God, which means it is made up of all born again believers in Christ. He then makes a statement that it is the pillar and ground of truth. Now it must be realized that the church does not establish the truth, the truth is given by God in his Word. The truth is also the Lord Jesus Christ Himself as He stated in John 14:6. (John 14:6 KJV) Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. When the passage speaks concerning the church being the pillar and ground of truth, it is speaking of the responsibility of the church in two areas. First, the church is built on the foundation of the prophets and apostles. (Eph 2:20 KJV) And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; This means that their authority for preaching the true gospel has been handed down to the church and the church now holds the foundational truths of Scripture. Then what it does with these truths is to uphold them in an evil world. The pillar was used widely in ancient times to uphold or support a structure. The church functions in the same manner that it upholds these truths. Now when compared to the false religions of the world, the true church comprised of all true believers, holds the true foundations of truth and upholds those truths against all the false religions of the world.
1 Tim 3:16 (KJB)
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
Without Controversy - Assuredly, admittedly, or confessedly
In the modern versions, God is removed and “he” replaced it. That is just another attack on the Incarnation of Christ showing that He was God in the flesh. Here Paul speaks about how great or tremendous is the mystery of godliness. There is no true believer who would not agree that the true godliness is a great mystery because it takes a reprobate sinner and makes them a godly person alive unto the things of God whereas before they were only concerned about the things of the world. Then Paul goes into the five fold description concerning the elements of that godliness which totally surround the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.
God was manifest in the flesh - God the Son was sent into the world to die for the sins of the Elect. He took on a totally human body and it is known as the incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ. He lived in this body for over thirty years, suffered in that body, was buried after His crucifixion and was raised bodily from the dead. In all His earthly ministry, He was seen in the flesh except on the Mount of Transfiguration when He was shown in glory.
Justified in the Spirit - The word “justified” carries with it the meaning of “rendered innocent or pronounced righteous.” In all His earthly ministry, the enemies of Jesus had accused Him of all kinds of sins from “blasphemy to drunkenness.” However, not once could they ever prove their accusations against Him because of the purity of His divine nature which caused Him to remain sinless in every aspect of His life. Since Jesus was totally sinless, He was totally qualified to be the savior of all those who were and are to become saved.
Seen of Angels - Jesus was seen by many angels, some of which were manifested to Him such as in the Garden of Gethsemane and the myriads of angels who were unseen by human eyes. Then there were the two angels who were in the tomb.
Preached unto the Gentiles - This phrase could also be understood as “proclaimed to the nations.” We know through the ministry of the Apostle Paul and others that the true Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ was proclaimed in many nations back then. This included the nations around the Mediterranean Sea and even India and Spain. Then the Gospel started to be proclaimed worldwide until it is now in every country in the world. So the name of the Lord Jesus Christ is now in the entire world.
Believed on in the world - Not only were there many Gentiles being saved, but also many Jews were becoming saved through the proclamation of the Gospel. The Apostle Paul led many to the Lord and many came to know Christ through the churches which were formed. From this nucleus of churches, worldwide evangelism began and people began to become saved. Those who were once of the world and in Satan’s kingdom, were now, by salvation in Christ, being transferred into the Kingdom of God.
Received up into glory - Forty days after the Lord Jesus Christ walked out of the tomb alive, He ascended into Heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father. This too was witnessed by his disciples. If the enemies of Christ wanted to claim this never happened, then they would have to show the grave or tomb of Christ and in two thousand years, no one has been able to give a location. This is because Christ is located in Heaven waiting to return soon to take His bride to Heaven on the last day. He now has His glorified body.