Early Church Households
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High Moral Standards 189

Christian Family

Aboriginal ElderIn the New Testament record, Early Church households conducted their own worship services at home. They gave baptismal instruction, performed baptisms, and celebrated the Lord's Supper in the Early Church household environment. In each town, there may have been one or two or more Early Church households. In a large city, there could have been many more. Leaders of Early Church households were drawn from those of good repute in the community. The high moral standards of its leaders were very important. Those who are successful in the management of their own households were considered suitable to be a "bishop" (also translated as "elder" or "overseer.") Paul says that "bishops" have the care of all the churches. He writes to Timothy in 1 Timothy 3.2-5, "Now the overseer (bishop) must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self controlled. He must manage his own family (household) well, and see that his children obey him with proper respect. If anyone does not know how to manage his own family (household), how can he take care of God's church?" In some Bible translations, "household" is substituted for "family."

"Early Church Households"
by Ron Meacock © 2017

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