Presbyters (Titus 2:2)

“Tell the presbyters

To be temperate,



And sound

In faith,

In love,

And in endurance.”

πρεσβύτας νηφαλίους εἶναι, σεμνούς, σώφρονας, ὑγιαίνοντας τῇ πίστει, τῇ ἀγάπῃ, τῇ ὑπομονῇ·

Paul said, “Tell the presbyters (πρεσβύτας) to be temperate (νηφαλίους εἶναι), serious (σεμνούς), prudent (σώφρονας), and sound (ὑγιαίνοντας) in faith (τῇ πίστει), in love (τῇ ἀγάπῃ), and in endurance (τῇ ὑπομονῇ).”  Only the Pauline letters used the word νηφαλίους, that means sober, not intoxicated, temperate, and vigilant, and the word σεμνούς, that means reverend, venerable, serious, honorable, grave, or dignified, as well as the word σώφρονας, that means of sound mind, self-controlled, temperate, and modest.  This sounds like 1 Timothy, chapter 3:2, when Paul was explaining the qualities of a bishop.  Paul told Titus how he wanted the presbyters, the elders, or the priests to act.  These older men should be temperate and not drunkards, serious and not frivolous, prudent and not foolish.  They had to be sound in faith, love, and patience.  The assumption was that the older males or elders were the presbyters of priests of a certain area.  How do the old men that you know act?

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