Matthew 20:25-28; Acts 14:21-23; Acts 20:17-38; Ephesians 4:11-14; 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9; Hebrews 13:7; Hebrews 13; 1 Peter 5:1-5

25 But Jesus called them to him and said, hYou know that the rulers of the Gentiles ilord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 26 jIt shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant,1 27 and whoever would be first among you must be your slave,2 28 even as the Son of Man came not to be served but kto serve, and lto give his life as a ransom for mmany.


21 When they had preached the gospel to that city and had kmade many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, 22 lstrengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them mto continue in nthe faith, and saying that othrough many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God. 23 And when they had pappointed qelders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting rthey committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed.


Paul Speaks to the Ephesian Elders

17 Now from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called ithe elders of the church to come to him. 18 And when they came to him, he said to them:

jYou yourselves know khow I lived among you the whole time jfrom the first day that I set foot in Asia, 19 lserving the Lord mwith all humility and with ntears and with trials that happened to me through othe plots of the Jews; 20 how I pdid not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and qteaching you in public and from house to house, 21 rtestifying both to Jews and to Greeks of srepentance toward God and of tfaith in our Lord Jesus Christ.1 22 And now, behold, I am going to Jerusalem, constrained uby2 the Spirit, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that vthe Holy Spirit testifies to me in every city that wimprisonment and xafflictions await me. 24 But yI do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only zI may finish my course and athe ministry bthat I received from the Lord Jesus, cto testify to dthe gospel of ethe grace of God. 25 And now, behold, fI know that none of you among whom I have gone about gproclaiming the kingdom will see my face again. 26 Therefore hI testify to you this day that iI am innocent of the blood of all, 27 for jI did not shrink from declaring to you kthe whole counsel of God. 28 lPay careful attention to yourselves and to all mthe flock, in which nthe Holy Spirit has made you ooverseers, pto care for qthe church of God,3 which he robtained swith his own blood.4 29 I rknow that after my departure tfierce wolves will come in among you, unot sparing the flock; 30 and vfrom among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 Therefore wbe alert, remembering that xfor three years I did not cease night or day yto admonish every one zwith tears. 32 And now aI commend you to God and to bthe word of his grace, which is able to cbuild you up and to give you dthe inheritance among all those who are sanctified. 33 eI coveted no one's silver or gold or apparel. 34 fYou yourselves know that gthese hands ministered to my necessities and hto those who were with me. 35 In all things iI have shown you that jby working hard in this way we must khelp the weak and lremember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, It is more blessed mto give than to receive.

36 And when he had said these things, nhe knelt down and prayed with them all. 37 And othere was much weeping on the part of all; pthey embraced Paul and pkissed him, 38 being sorrowful most of all because of qthe word he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And rthey accompanied him to the ship.


11 And mhe gave the napostles, the prophets, the oevangelists, the pshepherds1 and teachers,2 12 qto equip the saints for the work of ministry, for rbuilding up sthe body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to tthe unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, uto mature manhood,3 to the measure of the stature of vthe fullness of Christ, 14 so that we may no longer be children, wtossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in xdeceitful schemes.


Qualifications for Overseers

The saying is vtrustworthy: If anyone aspires to wthe office of overseer, he desires a noble task. Therefore xan overseer1 must be above reproach, ythe husband of one wife,2 zsober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, ahospitable, bable to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but cgentle, not quarrelsome, dnot a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity ekeeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for wGod's church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may fbecome puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he must be well thought of by goutsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into ha snare of the devil.


Qualifications for Elders

oThis is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and pappoint elders in every town as I directed you qif anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife,1 and his children are believers2 and not open to the charge of rdebauchery or insubordination. For an overseer,3 sas God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not tbe arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent uor greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, vand disciplined. He must whold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in xsound4 doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.


Remember fyour leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and gimitate their faith.


Sacrifices Pleasing to God

13 Let ubrotherly love continue. vDo not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby wsome have entertained angels unawares. xRemember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. yLet marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge zthe sexually immoral and adulterous. Keep your life afree from love of money, and bbe content with what you have, for he has said, cI will never leave you nor forsake you. So we can confidently say,

dThe Lord is my helper;

eI will not fear;

what can man do to me?

Remember fyour leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and gimitate their faith. Jesus Christ is hthe same yesterday and today and forever. Do not be iled away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, jnot by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them. 10 We have an altar kfrom which those who serve the tent1 have no right to eat. 11 For lthe bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy places by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned moutside the camp. 12 So Jesus also nsuffered ooutside the gate in order to sanctify the people pthrough his own blood. 13 Therefore let us go to him outside the camp and bear qthe reproach he endured. 14 For rhere we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. 15 sThrough him then let us continually offer up ta sacrifice of praise to God, that is, uthe fruit of lips that acknowledge his name. 16 Do not neglect to do good and vto share what you have, for such wsacrifices are pleasing to God.

17 Obey xyour leaders and submit to them, yfor they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to zgive an account. aLet them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.

18 bPray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, desiring to act honorably in all things. 19 I urge you the more earnestly to do this in order cthat I may be restored to you the sooner.

Benediction

20 Now dmay the God of peace ewho brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, fthe great shepherd of the sheep, by gthe blood of the eternal covenant, 21 hequip you with everything good that you may do his will, iworking in us2 that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, jto whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Final Greetings

22 I appeal to you, brothers,3 bear with my word of exhortation, for kI have written to you briefly. 23 You should know that lour brother Timothy has been released, with whom I shall see you if he comes soon. 24 Greet all myour leaders and all the saints. Those who come from Italy send you greetings. 25 nGrace be with all of you.


Shepherd the Flock of God

So I exhort the elders among you, mas a fellow elder and na witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: oshepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight,1 pnot under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you;2 qnot for shameful gain, but eagerly; not rdomineering over those in your charge, but sbeing examples to the flock. And when tthe chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the uunfading vcrown of glory. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. wClothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for xGod opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.