The apostle Paul was not married and had no children, but he did have a son in the faith: Titus. Paul’s letter to Titus shows his love for this young man and desire that Titus lead well. Let’s do a brief introduction to the book of Titus.
An Introduction to Titus
Live for God, teach the truth, and correct others with your living and your teaching.
“As for you, Titus, promote the kind of living that reflects wholesome teaching.” (Titus 2:1, NLT)
Paul was a “slave of God” and “apostle of Jesus Christ” (1:1). God trusted Paul to share the Gospel with everyone (1:3). And one of the ways that Paul shared the Gospel with everyone was train Titus and leave Titus on the island of Crete (1:5).
The letter to Titus was likely written A.D. 63-67. Paul left Timothy in Ephesus to lead the church there, then he left Titus on the island of Crete to do ministry there.
This letter was written to Titus, Paul’s “true son in the faith” (1:4). Titus was working with the people on the island of Create (1:5, 12). He was a gentile (Galatians 2:1-3) and a trusted coworker of Paul (2 Corinthians 2:13; 7:6-7, 13-15; 8:6, 16-17).
- LEADING (chapter 1)
- In the First Century Church (1:1-4)
- In the Local Church (1:5-10)
- In the False Church (1:11-14)
- In the True Church (1:15-16)
- LIVING (chapter 2)
- As Men and Women (2:1-8)
- As Slaves (2:9-10)
- As Christians (2:11-15)
- LOVING (chapter 3)
- Under Government Control (3:1-2)
- Under God’s Control (3:3-11)
- Under Good People’s Control (3:12-15)
Watch what you say.
The qualifications for elders/overseers are taught in the first chapter in contrast to people who engage in useless talk (1:10). Paul addresses women directly saying they shouldn’t slander others (2:3) as well as slaves saying they shouldn’t talk back to their masters (2:9). Then Paul proceeds to tell everyone to not slander others (3:2) and to avoid foolish discussions, quarrels, and fights (3:9).
Titus is told to encourage others with wholesome teaching that points out where others are doing wrong in their lives (1:9). He also is told to teach young people to live wisely (2:6) and to encourage people to do what he teaches (2:15).
In this letter grace brings salvation to all people (2:11) and it makes people right in God’s sight (3:7).
The promise of eternal life has been revealed to those God has chosen (1:1-3). God’s grace has been revealed (2:11) and Christ will be revealed when he comes back (2:13). Lastly, God’s kindness and love has been revealed (3:4), which led to Christ saving us, pouring out his Spirit on us, and giving us eternal life (3:5-7).
Don’t slander others.
Women are told not to slander others (2:3), but all people should avoid slander too (3:1).
Don’t participate in foolish spiritual discussions.
The people on the island of Crete were getting involved in silly talk about circumcision (1:10-14) as well as obedience to Jewish laws (3:9-11). Stay away from those foolish spiritual discussions. Instead, focus on the true Gospel (3:4-7).
Practice what you preach.
If you claim to know God by your words, you must claim to know him by your deeds (1:15-16). Your life should reflect wholesome teaching (2:1, 7-8). And because of your salvation and what has been done on your behalf, you should live a certain way (3:3-8).
Preach what you practice.
Stay focused on gospel teaching and not on Jewish myths and commands of people who have turned away from the truth (1:10-14). Tell people how to live (2:15) and tell them about grace and salvation (3:4-8).