October 20th Titus 1 A. Prologue Greetings and Blessings
1: Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness; 2: In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began; 3: But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour; 4: To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour.
B. Church Leadership To be a Elder
5: For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee: 6: If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly. 7: For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre; 8: But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate; 9: Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers. 10: For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: 11: Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake. 12: One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are always liars, evil beasts, slow bellies. 13: This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith; 14: Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth. 15: Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled. 16: They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.
Paul writes to Titus his great friend and fellow-worker. He calls himself a servant of God and an Apostle of Jesus Christ. And he says l am an apostle according to the faith of Gods chosen servants and according to the acknowledgement of the truth which leads to godliness in life. And he says l have confidence of having eternal life in the next life, which God has promised from the very beginning and he cannot lie. But God has in his own good time revealed himself through the preaching of the gospel which l was entrusted with. To Titus my own son in the faith – grace, mercy and peace from God and the Lord Jesus. I deliberately left you in Crete so that you would be able to straighten things out in the churches and constitute elders in every city as l give you authority. next Paul reminds Titus of the criteria of an elder. First he is to be a man who has no public accusations of impropriety. He will be the husband of one wife, having children that are trustworthy and well behaved. The overseer or shepherd must be beyond reproach as one who is a faithful steward of God, not always wanting his own way, not short tempered, not addicted to alcohol, not money mad, but a person who loves to help the poor and needy, one who loves good people, sensible, righteous, holy and self-disciplined. A man who holds securely the faithful word of God so that he is able to convict of error those who seek only what they can get out of Christianity. Because there are many men who are unwilling to submit to authority and full of pointless arguments and who seek to deceive. The Jews are very much like this and they need to be silenced, because they can seriously undermine whole houses of believers when they teach things that they aught not to do and for filthy cash. One of these men who was a so-called prophet said that, ‘The Cretians are habitual liars, and evil beasts (rude cruel and brutal) they are idle gluttons’. This is actually true, says Paul, however rebuke them severely so that they might be healthy in ‘the faith’. Do not pay any attention to Jewish stories and the traditions of the Jews that turn men away from the truth. You see, says Paul, to those whose minds are pure everything is pure but to those who are unclean in mind everything is a sin, because their mind and conscience is defiled. They say that they know God but what they do denies Christ. They are an abomination. They are disobedient to Gods will and everything they do is a turning away from God.