Acts 6:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word."

King James Bible
But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.

Darby Bible Translation
but *we* will give ourselves up to prayer and the ministry of the word.

World English Bible
But we will continue steadfastly in prayer and in the ministry of the word."

Young's Literal Translation
and we to prayer, and to the ministration of the word, will give ourselves continually.'

Acts 6:4 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

We will give ourselves continually to prayer - Προσκαρτερησομεν, We will steadfastly and invariably attend, we will carefully keep our hearts to this work. The word is very emphatic.

To prayer. - See this defined, Matthew 6:5 (note). Even apostles could not live without prayer; they had no independent graces; what they had could not be retained without an increase; and for this increase they must make prayer and supplication, depending continually on their God.

Ministry of the word - Διακονιᾳ του λογου, The deaconship of the word. The continual proclamation of the Gospel of their Lord; and, to make this effectual to the souls of the hearers, they must continue in prayer: a minister who does not pray much, studies in vain.

The office of deacon, διακονος, came to the Christian from the Jewish Church. Every synagogue had at least three deacons, which were called פרנסים parnasim, from פרנס parnes, to feed, nourish, support, govern. The פרנס parnas, or deacon, was a sort of judge in the synagogue; and, in each, doctrine and wisdom were required, that they might be able to discern and give right judgment in things both sacred and civil. The חזן chazan, and שמש shamash, were also a sort of deacons. The first was the priest's deputy; and the last was, in some cases, the deputy of this deputy, or the sub-deacon. In the New Testament the apostles are called deacons, 2 Corinthians 6:4; Ephesians 3:7; Colossians 1:23 : see also 2 Corinthians 11:15. Christ himself, the Shepherd and Bishop of souls, is called the deacon of the circumcision, λεγω δε Χριστον Ιησουν διακονον γεγενησθαι περιτομης, Romans 15:8. As the word implies to minister or serve, it was variously applied, and pointed out all those who were employed in helping the bodies or souls of men; whether apostles, bishops, or those whom we call deacons. Some remark that there were two orders of deacons:

1. Διακονοι της τραπιζης, deacons of the Table, whose business it was to take care of the alms collected in the Church, and distribute them among the poor, widows, etc.

2. Διακονοι του λογου, deacons of the Word, whose business it was to preach, and variously instruct the people. It seems that after the persecution raised against the apostolic Church, in consequence of which they became dispersed, the deaconship of tables ceased, as did also the community of goods; and Philip, who was one of these deacons, who at first served tables, betook himself entirely to preaching of the word: see Acts 8:4, etc.

In the primitive Church, it is sufficiently evident that the deacons gave the bread and wine in the Eucharist to the believers in the Church, and carried it to those who were absent, Just. Mar. Apol. ii. p. 162; they also preached, and in some cases administered baptism. See Suicer on the words Διακονος, Κηρυσσω, and Βαπτισμα. But it appears they did the two last by the special authority of the bishop. In the ancient Roman Church, and in the Romish Church, the number of seven deacons, in imitation of those appointed by the apostles, was kept up; and in the council of Neocaesarea it was decreed that this number should never be exceeded, even in the largest cities: vide Concil. Neocaesar. Canon. xiv. other Churches varied this number; and the Church of Constantinople had not less than one hundred. Deacons were ordained by the bishops, by imposition of hands. None was ordained deacon till he was twenty-five years of age, and we find that it was lawful for them to have wives. See Suicer under the word Διακονος, and see the note on Matthew 20:26.

In the Church of England, (the purest and nearest to the apostolical model in doctrine and discipline of all national Churches), a deacon receives ordination by the imposition of the hands of a bishop, in consequence of which he can preach, assist in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper, and in general perform any sacred office, except consecrating the elements, and pronouncing the absolution. No person in this Church can be ordained deacon till he be twenty-three years of age, unless by dispensation from the Abp. of Canterbury. There were deaconesses, both in the apostolic and primitive Church, who had principally the care of the women, and visited and ministered to them in those circumstances in which it would have been improper for a deacon to attend. They also assisted in preparing the female candidates for baptism.

At present, the office for which the seven deacons were appointed is, in the Church of England, filled by the churchwardens and overseers of the poor; in other Churches and religious societies, by elders, stewards, etc., chosen by the people, and appointed by the minister.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge


Acts 2:42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

Acts 20:19-31 Serving the LORD with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews...

Romans 12:6-8 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy...

1 Corinthians 9:16 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid on me; yes, woe is to me, if I preach not the gospel!

Colossians 4:17 And say to Archippus, Take heed to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you fulfill it.

1 Timothy 4:13-16 Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine...

2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine.


Acts 1:14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.

Acts 13:2,3 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said...

Romans 1:9 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son...

Ephesians 1:15-17 Why I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love to all the saints...

Ephesians 3:14-21 For this cause I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ...

Philippians 1:4,9-11 Always in every prayer of my for you all making request with joy...

Colossians 1:9-13 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you...

Colossians 2:1 For I would that you knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea...

Colossians 4:12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, salutes you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers...

October 4 Morning
Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him.--EXO. 34:29. Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory.--Lord, when saw we thee a hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?--In lowliness of mind, let each esteem other better than themselves.--Be clothed with humility. [Jesus] was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.--All that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on Stephen,
Anonymous—Daily Light on the Daily Path

Good Earnests of Great Success
So I felt when I met with the brethren last Thursday night. The attendance at the church meeting was very numerous, and the unanimity that prevailed not only gratified me, but I must confess astounded me too. I think all of us who know anything of the history of churches, especially those of a democratic order, where we recognize the rights of every member, understand how easy it is for thoughts to diverge, for counsels to vary, and for excellent brethren conscientiously to disagree. A breach once
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 14: 1868

Philip, the Evangelist
BY REV. GEORGE MILLIGAN, M.A., D.D. Philip the Evangelist must be carefully distinguished from Philip the Apostle. And though it is little that we are told regarding him in Scripture, that little is very significant. He first comes before us as one of the seven chosen by the early Church at Jerusalem to take charge of the daily ministration of charity to the poor widows (Acts vi. I ff.). And when this work is hindered by the outbreak of persecution following on the death of Stephen, we find him
George Milligan—Men of the Bible; Some Lesser-Known

Whether Christ Should have Led a Life of Poverty in this World?
Objection 1: It would seem that Christ should not have led a life of poverty in this world. Because Christ should have embraced the most eligible form of life. But the most eligible form of life is that which is a mean between riches and poverty; for it is written (Prov. 30:8): "Give me neither beggary nor riches; give me only the necessaries of life." Therefore Christ should have led a life, not of poverty, but of moderation. Objection 2: Further, external wealth is ordained to bodily use as to
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Cross References
Luke 1:23
When his time of service was completed, he returned home.

Acts 1:14
They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.

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