These are notes collected from studying with brothers in Christ. Anything good comes from the Lord. Everything else is from us!
Reading through Titus I am excited by the practicality of the message and how Paul emphasizes the idea that our relationship with God is what brings change in us.
1:9 “He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.”
-I love the community aspect here. Following Jesus is not only about believing ourselves but also sharing the good news and building up the community around us.
1:15-16 “To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted. They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.”
-This reminds me, once again, of Matthew 7 where Jesus says that we will be recognized by our fruit. Our actions will expose our belief system plain and simple.
2:11 “For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age…”
-Saying “No” to sin can only happen when we say “Yes” to Jesus and the grace he has given us.
3:3-7 “We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”
-So grateful for Jesus. Without him I look a lot like the descriptions in verse 3.
- Titus 1 showed that Titus was to bring order to disorder, and this was primarily achieved through appointing elders. Speaks to me that God isn’t looking for “systems” or “models” to bring order, but God-fearing leaders. Jesus shows the same in pouring into people during his ministry, as opposed to teaching a “system” for ministry.
- In Titus 2, we’re shown so much the grace of God does. Saves us but also trains us to live for Him. It’s all by grace, which also will change our lives if it’s truly His grace. Some wrongly think Christian grace is divorced from life change.
- Touched by the constant refrain of doing “good works”. Goes with point 2. True Christianity leads to godly works. Conversely, we’re warned of false Christianity that May profess the right things but deny Him in action (ch 1).
God’s kindness first and then His Holy Spirit within us changes everything. It’s only by this power that we can live in this counter cultural way ie no hate, not longer slaves to various passions, avoiding quarreling.
By His spirit we can focus on issues of the utmost importance and then prioritize our time there. There will always be so many voices (both in but especially out of the church) trying to pull us elsewhere.
One thought on “Titus”
Always thought it fabulous that the apostle of faith totally confirms the Jamesian letter of, “faith without works is dead”, when Paul tells us that there are those that deny the faith they proclaim by their actions. Always loved that statement.