Titus: Faith At Work

faith at work“In writing to Titus, the young pastor of Crete’s pioneer church, the Apostle Paul pressed home this fundamental truth with impressive persistence and urgency. The task before Titus was not an easy one. Cretan culture was marked by deceit, ungodliness, sloth, and gluttony (Titus 1:12). And he was to provoke a total Christian reconstruction there! He was to introduce peace with God through Christ. Thus, Paul’s instructions were strategically precise and to the point. Titus was to preach judgement and hope, but he was also to make good deeds the focus of his outreach. Charity was to be a central priority.

So, Paul tells Titus he must order his fledgling ministry among the Cretans accordingly. He himself was “to be a pattern of good deeds” (Titus 2:7). He was to teach the people “to be ready for every good work” (Titus 3:1). The older women and the younger women were to be thus instructed, so “that the word of God may not be dishonored” (Titus 2:5); and the bondslaves, “that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things” (Titus 2:10). They were all to “learn to maintain good works, to meet urgent needs, that they may not be unfruitful” (Titus 3:14). There were those within the church who professed “to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work” (Titus 1:16). These, Titus was to “rebuke … sharply, that they may be sound in the faith” (Titus 1:13). He was to “affirm constantly, that those who have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works” (Titus 3:8).

As a pastor, Titus had innumerable tasks that he was responsible to fulfill. He had administrative duties (Titus 1:5), doctrinal duties (Titus 2:1), discipling duties (Titus 2:2-10), preaching duties (Titus 2:15), counseling duties (Titus 3:1-2), and arbitrating duties (Titus 3:12-13). But intertwined with them all, fundamental to them all, were his charitable duties.

And what was true for Titus then is true for us all today, for “these things are good and profitable for all men” (Titus 3:8 KJV).”

George Grant – In The Shadow of Plenty

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