Biblical Qualifications for Elders and Deacons


Any man whose manner, conduct, thoughts, or attitude is not honorable, worthy of respect and admiration, and dignified does not meet this qualification and should not be a deacon.

The same is true of deacons. A deacon should not be seeking dishonest gain. He should not seek to exalt himself among the flock of God by the office of deacon. He should not try to garner to himself power, control, or authority over others.

The deacon’s reputation should be above reproach. No one should be able to lay hold of him or assail him or reproach him because of his sins, whether in speech, conduct, or doctrine. Every Christian sins until the day he lays down this body of sin at death. Daily sins that are common to all men do not bring reproach and blame upon a person from others because they too are guilty of the same sins. A deacon, like an overseer, must have and maintain a good name. There should be no question as to his integrity or upright character.

When a man serves well in the office of deacon and gains the respect and honor of the church, he also becomes more confident in faith in Christ. He gains assurance that what he believes and what he does in service to Christ and his church are pleasing to God and to the church. He becomes bolder and less inhibited in his work as a deacon in the congregation. His trust in Christ becomes stronger and he is able to serve Christ with greater boldness. He is more confident that he knows how to apply God’s Word to the needs of people whom he serves in the office of deacon.

The wife of an overseer or deacon must be faithful in every respect. Her husband should be able to trust her completely in everything. He should have no doubt that she will be faithful to him in marriage. He should have no doubt that he can trust her not to tell others about confidential information that he tells her. He should trust her to teach and train his children. He should trust her to manage the household. He should trust her to be prudent and gracious to others. She should be a trustworthy advisor and helper to her husband. Her word should be reliable. Her husband should be able to depend upon her no matter what the situation.

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