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"What is a Deacon?"
by Tom Goodman
August 30, 2006

This Sunday night, we’ll ordain seven more deacons for our church.  What is a deacon?  In short, a deacon does officially what all believers should do.  All believers are called to serve; a deacon has been assigned by his church to a particular job of service.

Our English word “deacon” comes from the Greek word, diakonos.  The word and its variations appear about 100 times in the Greek New Testament, but our English Bibles translate that word as “deacon” in only two or three places.  Ninety-eight percent of the time the word diakonos is found in verses describing what all Christians should be; in two or three verses we see that same word used to describe people who occupied an official church position.

This point is important so we don’t get the mistaken notion that only a few are called to serve while the rest of the church can be pew potatoes.  One pastor said of his church, “My church is full of willing people:  Some are willing to work, others are willing to let them!”  That’s not the kind of “willing people” Jesus called us to be!

Still, though all believers are called to a life of service, some are recognized in official capacities as servants of the church.  And I’m so grateful for those who serve as deacons!  The Bible says that an effective team of deacons will bring benefit to the church and to themselves.  According to Acts 6, the church will benefit.  Because the work of deacons solved a church dispute, verse 7 says, “God’s message was preached in ever-widening circles” and “the number of believers greatly increased.”  The need was met, the Word spread, and the church grew.  But it’s not just the church body that benefits;  Deacons will benefit, too.  First Timothy 3:13 says, “Those who do well as deacons will be rewarded with respect from others and will have increased confidence in their faith in Christ Jesus.”

This Sunday night at 5:30 p.m., join us as we set aside seven new deacons: John Alvis, Marcos Apodaca, Fred Chappell, Bryan Goodwin, Grant Perkins, Paul Rusch, and Andre Shomba.


Important Notes:

Photo Sittings for our New Directory!  Be sure to schedule a sitting for our photo directory September 14-16!  You can sign up after both morning services this week!

Hillcrest Institute of Lifelong Learning.  The Fall semester of the Hillcrest Institute is off and running!  Some of the classes are still open, including PraiseHill and several classes that will start later in the semester.  Review and register online!

Golf Tournament.  Check out Gene’s column online for more information about our Hillcrest Golf Tournament Saturday September 16 and the Warm-Up on Friday, September 15!

The Sermon Series, “God is Closer Than You Think,” concludes this Sunday.  Click here to hear last week’s message from our website, or click here to listen to it on iTunes.

Links to Your World

In “Man Shall Not Live by Krispy Kreme Alone,” see my comments about a recent study finding that being Baptist isn’t good for your waistline!
Last week's nationwide poll of American attitudes toward religion and politics was enlightening.   A good summary line:  “Most Americans believe liberals have gone too far in trying to keep religion out of schools and government, while half believe conservative Christians have gone too far in trying to impose their religious values on the nation.”
I thought the Wall Street Journal article, “Ambassador Training,” was interesting.  “What are we teaching 600,000 foreign students about the U.S.?” the author asks.  With many of those foreign students right here in Austin, it’s a relevant question for us.
Get AnchoredYou’ll find my comments about these and other news items at my weblog, “Get Anchored.”  Sign up for e-mail updates or assign the blog to your news reader.

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