Never administer a sharp reprimand to a man older than yourself; but entreat him as if he were your father, and the younger men as brothers;
the elder women too as mothers, and the younger women as sisters, with perfect modesty.
Honour widows who are really in need.
But if a widow has children or grandchildren, let these learn first to show piety towards their own homes and to prove their gratitude to their parents; for this is well pleasing in the sight of God.
A widow who is really in need, friendless and desolate, has her hopes fixed on God, and continues at her supplications and prayers, night and day;
but a pleasure-loving widow is dead even while still alive.
Press these facts upon them, so that they may live lives free from reproach.
But if a man makes no provision for those dependent on him, and especially for his own family, he has disowned the faith and is behaving worse than an unbeliever.
No widow is to be put on the roll who is under sixty years of age.
She must have been true to her one husband, and well reported of for good deeds, as having brought up children, received strangers hospitably, washed the feet of God’s people, given relief to the distressed, and devoted herself to good works of every kind.
But the younger widows you must not enrol; for as soon as they begin to chafe against the yoke of Christ, they want to marry,
and they incur disapproval for having broken their original vow.
And at the same time they also learn to be idle as they go round from house to house; and they are not only idle, but are gossips also and busybodies, speaking of things that ought not to be spoken of.
I would therefore have the younger women marry, bear children, rule in domestic matters, and furnish the adversary with no excuse for slander.
For already some of them have gone astray, following Satan.
If a believing woman has widows dependent on her, she should relieve their wants, and save the Church from being burdened–so that the Church may relieve the widows who are really in need.
Let the elders who perform their duties wisely and well be held worthy of double honour, especially those who labour in preaching and teaching.
For the scripture says, <“You are not to muzzle the ox while it is treading out the grain;”> and the workman deserves his pay.
Never entertain an accusation against an Elder except on the evidence of two of three witnesses.
Those who persist in sin reprove in the presence of all, so that it may also be a warning to the rest.
I solemnly call upon you, in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of the elect angels, to carry out these instructions of mine without prejudice, and to do nothing from partiality.
Do not ordain any one hastily; and do not be a partaker in the sins of others; keep *yourself* pure.
(No longer be a water-drinker; but take a little wine for the sake of your digestion and your frequent ailments.)
The sins of some men are evident to the world, leading the way to your estimate of their characters, but the sins of others lag behind.
So also the right actions of some are evident to the world, and those that are not cannot remain for ever out of sight.