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bishop

Meaning: an overseer

In apostolic times, it is quite manifest that there was no difference as to order between bishops and elders or presbyters (Acts 20:17-28; 1 Pet. 5:1-2; Philippians 1:1; 1 Tim. 3).

The term bishop is never once used to denote a different office from that of elder or presbyter. These different names are simply titles of the same office, “bishop” designating the function, namely, that of oversight, and “presbyter” the dignity appertaining to the office. Christ is figuratively called “the bishop [episcopos] of souls” (1 Pet. 2:25).

Author: Matthew G. Easton.