|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:8-13 The deacons were at first appointed to distribute the charity of the church, and to manage its concerns, yet pastors and evangelists were among them. The deacons had a great trust reposed in them. They must be grave, serious, prudent men. It is not fit that public trusts should be lodged in the hands of any, till they are found fit for the business with which they are to be trusted. All who are related to ministers, must take great care to walk as becomes the gospel of Christ.
Verse 10. Serve as deacons for use the office of a deacon, A.V.; if they be for being found, A.V. And let these also, etc. There is an ambiguity in the English here. It is not" these also" - these in addition to others, i.e. the bishops before named - but "these be also first proved." Their general character, as described in vers. 8, 9, must not be taken upon loose hearsay, but must be put to the test by examination, by special testimony, by inquiry, and then, if they are ἀνέγκλητοι, not accused, not open to just blame, blameless, let them be admitted to serve as deacons (see ver. 13, note). The Church of England scrupulously acts up to these directions by requiring written testimonials, by personal inquiries made by the bishop, by the Si quis, by the appeal to the congregation in the Ordination Service, "Brethren, if there be any of you who knoweth any impediment, or notable crime, in any of these persons presented to be ordained deacons, for the which he ought not to be admitted to that office, let him come forth in the name of God, and show what the crime or impediment is;" as well as by the careful examination of the candidates. Blameless (comp. Titus 1:6, 7); ἀνέγκλητος, rendered in the Vulgate nullum crimen habentes (which seems to explain the "notable crime" of the Ordination Service), and in Colossians 1:22 "unreprovable" both in the A.V. and the R.V. The whole passage, from ver. 2 to ver. 13, shows the supreme importance of a holy and blameless conversation in the clergy.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And let these also first be proved,.... Not that they should be tried in any part of the deacon's office, to see how capable they are of performing it; but their internal and external characters are to be looked into and examined, and if they appear, to be right, then they are to be approved of, chosen and called unto, and invested with the office:
then let them use the office of a deacon; let them be employed and minister in the several parts and branches of that office:
being found blameless; not without sin, but free from any gross and enormous one; not before God, but in the sight of men; See Gill on 1 Timothy 3:2.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
10. "And moreover," &c. [Alford].
be proved—not by a period of probation, but by a searching inquiry, conducted by Timothy, the ordaining president (1Ti 5:22), whether they be "blameless"; then when found so, "let them act as deacons."
blameless—Greek, "unexceptionable"; as the result of public investigation unaccused [Tittmann].
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