Not a recent convert (1 Tim. 3:6)

“A bishop must not be

A recent convert.

Otherwise,

He might be puffed up

With conceit,

And fall

Into the condemnation

Of the devil.”

μὴ νεόφυτον, ἵνα μὴ τυφωθεὶς εἰς κρίμα ἐμπέσῃ τοῦ διαβόλου.

Paul said, “A bishop must not be a recent convert (μὴ νεόφυτον).  Otherwise, he might be puffed up with conceit (ἵνα μὴ τυφωθεὶς), and fall (ἐμπέσῃ) into the condemnation (εἰς κρίμα) of the devil (τοῦ διαβόλου).”  Only this letter to Timothy used this unique word νεόφυτον, that means newly planted, newly converted, or a recent convert, as well as the word τυφωθεὶς that means to be conceited, foolish, puffed up, or haughty.  Paul maintained that a recent convert or new Christian should not be a bishop or an overseer.  There was always the chance that this new Christian might be puffed up with conceit, so that he might easily fall into the judgment of the devil.  Paul thought that it would be better to have the leader as someone who had been a Christian for a while, a more experienced person.  Do you think that a recent convert should be a Christian leader?

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