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The Overseer and His Family

1 Tim. 3:4, 5

We invite you to join us for worship each Sunday morning at 9:30. You can download our service on iTunes or tune in for “The Good Word” each day on AM 1230 WSAL or on Hoosier Country 103.7 FM just after 8am. We have studied how an overseer must now be in his observable behavior. Now we turn to how he must be observed in leading his family! V. 4 is how the man must now be observed in managing his own household. The word “manage” means to govern, lead, give direction – to the family.” Whenever God calls anyone to any position of leadership where that leadership affects or influences other lives, especially the lives of God’s adopted children, the one doing the managing understands the position is one of leadership by example. Nowhere in Scripture does God ever say to any of His chosen leaders – just tell them; God always tells His leaders, “show them!”

Scripture sets forth 3 criteria describing how an overseer must manage his own household. This is another place all 3 characteristics must be observable. 1st a pastor,

  1. Must manage his house well. In the OT “well” means beautiful in outward appearance.” It is used in Gen. 12:14 in reference to Abe’s wife, Sarah; it is also used in Gen. 29:17 of Jacob’s wife Rachel. In the NT it takes on a different meaning. Good, or well, then means “as God would act.” It always means “that which is as God has said.” The point is here; a pastor, overseer must be observed as governing, leading or giving direction to his family through verbal instruction and through his own daily life that are in harmony with God’s word. One writer sums “manage” up like this: The term “manage” demands an effective exercise of authority bolstered by a character of integrity and sensitive compassion. An overseer must not only manage his family well:

  2. HE MUST MANAGE WITH DIGNITY. He must manage his family with all dignity so he and his family are above reproach! In common Greek speech *dignity means “orderliness perceived in a man’s attitude and behavior that is felt to be dignified. In the OT nobility and what is right in the sight of God as in Prov. 8:6. When Paul uses it in the Pastorals, 1, 2 Tim, Titus, he always uses it as a requirement for church leaders. Here it means “honorable conduct that reveals a serious and worthy lifestyle.” Finally an overseer must manage his household well, with dignity:  

  3. KEEPING HIS CHILDREN SUBMISSIVE! The word submissive broadly means “to place under.” You will remember from past lessons, God “places under” for protection! In the family structure, the husband is “under” God; a wife and children are “under” both God and the husband. When a man decides he doesn’t need or want to live his entire life in harmony with all God says in His Bible, the man takes himself out from under God’s protection; and that is dangerous, because now the man is exposed to unguarded attack from Satan. Arrogance, or self-rule is a downward spiral to destruction! Notice though an overseer must “keep” his children in submission. Keeping/having broadly means “in one’s possession.” The man who possesses the submission of his children is a man whose children live “under” him because they know in their hearts his allegiance is to the Lord, and Dad sees his children as gifts from God. As a result of Dad’s allegiance to God, they desire to submit to him because they know he has their best interest at heart! Dad comes to “possess” or have his children’s submission earning it through continual submission to God in his everyday life. The NIV uses the phrase “obey him with proper respect” meaning, “when Dad speaks we better listen.” One writer summarizes vs. 4, 5 this way “The overseer’s duty is to “conduct himself so that the members of the church may be obedient to him, not as servants to a master, but as children to a father, that they may show him obedience in love. The skillful pastor will give to the church the type of leadership that will encourage his people to follow him.

If we can help you with your spiritual questions, call us at 574-643-9419.

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