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Clement of Rome - First Epistle to the Corinthians

Chapter XLII.—The order of ministers in the Church.

Chapter XLII.--The order of ministers in the Church.

The apostles have preached the Gospel to us from [178] the Lord Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ [has done so] from [179] God. Christ therefore was sent forth by God, and the apostles by Christ. Both these appointments, [180] then, were made in an orderly way, according to the will of God. Having therefore received their orders, and being fully assured by the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and established [181] in the word of God, with full assurance of the Holy Ghost, they went forth proclaiming that the kingdom of God was at hand. And thus preaching through countries and cities, they appointed the first-fruits [of their labours], having first proved them by the Spirit, [182] to be bishops and deacons of those who should afterwards believe. Nor was this any new thing, since indeed many ages before it was written concerning bishops and deacons. For thus saith the Scripture in a certain place, "I will appoint their bishops [183] in righteousness, and their deacons [184] in faith." [185]