1 Timothy 5
Honor WidowsDo not sharply rebuke an older man, but rather plead with him as a father, to the younger men as brothers, 2 the older women as mothers, and the younger women as sisters, in all purity. 3 Honor widows who are widows indeed, 4 but if any widow has children or grandchildren, they must first learn to practice piety in regard to their own family and to make some return to their parents; for this is acceptable in the sight of God. 5 Now she who is a widow indeed and who has been left alone, has fixed her hope on God and continues in petitions and prayers night and day. 6 But she who lives in self-indulgence is dead even while she lives. 7 And command these things as well, so that they may be above reproach. 8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. 9 A widow is to be put on the list only if she is not less than sixty years old, having been the wife of one man, 10 having a reputation for good works; if she has brought up children, if she has shown hospitality to strangers, if she has washed the saints’ feet, if she has assisted those in affliction, if she has devoted herself to every good work. 11 But refuse to put younger widows on the list, for when they feel sensual desires in disregard of Christ, they want to get married, 12 thus incurring condemnation, because they have set aside their previous pledge. 13 And at the same time they also learn to be idle, as they go around from house to house. And not merely idle, but also gossips and busybodies, talking about things not proper to mention. 14 Therefore, I want younger widows to get married, bear children, keep house, and give the enemy no opportunity for reviling, 15 for some have already turned aside after Satan. 16 If any believing woman has widows, she must assist them and the church must not be burdened, so that it may assist those who are widows indeed.
Honoring the Elders17 The elders who lead well are to be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor at preaching the word and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle the ox while it is threshing,” and “The laborer is worthy of his wages.” 19 Do not receive an accusation against an elder except on the basis of two or three witnesses. 20 Those who continue in sin, reprove in the presence of all, so that the rest also will be fearful. 21 I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His elect angels, to observe these instructions without bias, doing nothing in partiality. 22 Do not lay hands upon anyone hastily and thereby share responsibility for the sins of others; keep yourself pure. 23 No longer drink water only, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments. 24 The sins of some men are quite evident, going before them to judgment; for others, their sins follow after. 25 So also good works are quite evident, and those which are otherwise cannot be concealed.