Titus 1:1-4

Today, we begin a new series in the short epistle of Paul to Titus. (Why? I’m teaching Titus this semester, so it’ll be helpful to me in refreshing my memory. And, since it’s inspired Scripture, I know it’ll be helpful to you as well – most obviously in its reminder about godly living in a world that is anything but godly.)

We’ll find out why Paul writes to Titus tomorrow, since he gives an explanation in verse 5. Today, we’ll look at the first four verses. They form what are traditionally called the ”epistolary greeting” – the sender and addressee – but also function as a bit of a preview of what the letter will be about. Let’s read:

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Titus 1:5-9 (part one)

We continue in our series in Titus, which began yesterday. Having given a preview of what the letter will be about (what it means to be a faithful, godly servant of God our true saviour) Paul begins by telling Titus his main reason for writing: to authorise him to appoint faithful, godly servants of God as elders in Crete. Although the letter is addressed to Titus, it’s clearly intended to be “overheard” by the entire community of believers in Crete, giving Titus a mandate to do what Paul is instructing here. Read it now:

Titus 1:5-9 The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint elders in every town, as I directed you. 6 An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient. 7 Since an overseer manages God’s household, he must be blameless—not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain. 8 Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. 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.

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Titus 1:5-9 (part two)

We continue in our series in Titus. Yesterday, we opened up a can of worms by looking at the characteristics of elders in Titus 1:5-9. We looked at a few of the worms, but there are still plenty more left today.  But first, read the text again to remind yourself of what we’re discussing:

Titus 1:5-9 The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint elders in every town, as I directed you. 6 An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient. 7 Since an overseer manages God’s household, he must be blameless—not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain. 8 Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. 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.

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Titus 1:4-9 (part three)

We continue in our series in Titus. Over the past two days we’ve been sorting out the worms that jumped out of the can when we read about the characteristics of elders in Titus 1:5-9. The final part of that passage is important, but probably a bit less controversial.

Titus 1:8-9  Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. 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.

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Titus 1:10-16

We continue our series in the book of Titus. Last week, we looked at the character traits of the elders Titus was to appoint on the island of Crete. This week, we see the opposite: what the false teachers are like, from whom Titus must protect the church.

Titus 1:10-16 For there are many rebellious people, full of meaningless talk and deception, especially those of the circumcision group. 11 They must be silenced, because they are disrupting whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach—and that for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 One of Crete’s own prophets has said it: “Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons.” 13 This saying is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith 14 and will pay no attention to Jewish myths or to the merely human commands of those who reject the truth. 15 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. 16 They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.

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