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7 For a bishop must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money,  


There are certain besetting sins of a leader. This verse delineates these sins.

7 For

“For” gives justification for choosing leaders who are free from blame. There is a logical connection between a bishop’s home life and his church life. Just as a father functions as a leader of his home, so a leader of the church runs the church.

a bishop must be blameless,

In this verse, Paul changed from the term elder to “bishop.” The word bishop means overseer. “Bishop” is singular here and everywhere else in the New Testament. There is only one “bishop” per congregation, yet there are many elders. Bishop carries more the idea of the official capacity of governing.

The pastor is the bishop of a local congregation. The way we use the term “bishop” in the twenty-first century is not, in most cases, the same way it was used in the first century.

Paul repeated the word “blameless” from verse six. The reason is that a “bishop” represents God as a “steward.” Damage to the reputation of a bishop damages God’s reputation.

Note the word “must.” There is no option when choosing a church leader; he must be blameless. He must represent his Lord in a worthy manner.


The pastor-bishop must have a good reputation to lead a congregation effectively.


No one should suspect the bishop of being unfit for this task. If a man is blameless in how he runs his household, he will probably lead the church in the same way. A pastor with a poor reputation will have difficulty in leading a congregation.