Paul’s Vision for the Deacons:
Assisting the Elders with the Care of God’s Church
Not Just a Revision
In 1992, we published The New Testament Deacon: Minster of Mercy. As the years passed, it became clear that the original book needed to be revised and updated, in order to address the church’s current thinking on this important topic. However, as Alexander Strauch worked on the revision, he found that the subject required more than a simple revision. And so, a completely new book was born!
What’s Different in This Book?
Paul’s Vision for the Deacons is a completely new book. It addresses present-day scholarship as well current problems in the way in which the church is addressing the question of deacons. Moreover, the author’s understanding of what the Scriptures teach on the role of deacons has changed.
In the words of Mr. Strauch, “My intention in writing this book is to encourage my dear deacon friends and fellow church leaders to think more critically about what they are saying and doing in light of what Scripture actually teaches (or does not teach) about deacons…. Whatever your view may be, I urge you to use this study to examine in detail the biblical facts on deacons and allow those facts to guide your thinking. This approach offers the opportunity to build broader agreement among Bible-believing churches as to what deacons do.”
To download free sample chapters of the book, please click here.
While Paul’s Vision for the Deacons undoubtedly stands alone as an important resource on the topic, certain topics addressed in the book lend themselves to very technical and detailed discussions that could muddle the book and frustrate many readers. Nonetheless, these are important topics and worthwhile studies. Throughout the text and the study guide, Strauch refers to supplemental resources that will help provide a deeper understanding of the subject matter. Below are links to these in-depth studies.
- Diakon- Word Group: Based largely on the extensive work of Clarence D. Agan III, Alexander Strauch provides a study of the extra-biblical usage of diakon- as “agency.”
- A Study of Acts 6:1-7: No biblical study of deacons is complete without a careful examination of this key passage. With this in mind, Strauch offers a detailed exposition and addresses the key questions involved.
- Every Member Ministry: Growth in the body of Christ comes “when each part is working properly” (Eph. 4:18). In this article, Strauch discusses the critical nature of involving the whole church body in the work of ministry.
- Gynaikes in 1 Timothy 3:11: In the book, Strauch points to five views of the gynaikes in 1 Timothy 3:11. In this study, Strauch examines the arguments for and against each of these views. Included in this study is an examination of five different interpretations of the Romans 16 passage, in which Phoebe is described as a “diakonos of the church.”
- “Husband of one wife”: This biblical qualification for deacons (1 Tim. 3:12) is interpreted in a variety of ways. In this article, Strauch provides an in-depth assessment of each view.
- Deacon Evaluation Survey Template: In the study guide for Paul’s Vision for the Deacons, Strauch provided a template to help congregations gather feedback as they examine a prospective deacon. Download this template for a starting point in developing a survey that fits your church.
Paul’s Vision for the Deacons: Assisting the Elders with the Care of God’s Church
This new book is currently available through Lewis & Roth for an introductory price of $9.00. A helpful study guide will be available soon, making this excellent material for training and equipping the deacons, as well as the elders responsible to oversee them.