3 Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business; 4 but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”
The “therefore” draws an inference from Acts 6:2, where the apostles declared that it was not wise for them to take the emphasis off prayer and their proclamation of the “Word of God.”
brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation,
The apostles decided to delegate authority to disburse the workload of the church among men of “good reputation.” Biblical leadership requires qualification. The church needed leaders who were not only holy but were perceived as holy—men with integrity. Reputation is one thing, but integrity of character is another.
full of the Holy Spirit
One standard for Christian leadership is that those who lead should be filled with the Spirit—that is, controlled by the Spirit. These were men who allowed the Spirit to work in and through them.
The use of “wisdom” here is discernment and aptitude for management.
whom we may appoint over this business;
The role of the seven was an appointment by the apostles. The church searched for and nominated the men, but the apostles appointed them to their positions.
but we will give ourselves continually to prayer
Verse 4 gives the focus of apostolic ministry, which was different from the seven chosen to help them. The first focus of the apostles was continual prayer.
and to the ministry of the word.”
The ministry of the Word is the study and proclamation of the Word of God.
The local church needs progressive organization.
Church polity is a hot topic today. How should the church organize itself? Should a church be elder led, pastor led, or congregational led? One clear thing is that the organization of the local church was a developing matter as the church expanded. The larger the congregation, the more it needs leadership and organization. Organization reflects the organized nature of God (1 Co 14:33). There is a warning about too much focus on organization, because the church is not essentially an organization but an organism. Organization is the means, not the end, of church life.