Titus 2


The Older Men

‘You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.’ Titus 2:1-2

Paul commands Titus to ‘teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine,’ in other words, his teaching must be relevant and healthy and beneficial to their soul, 1 Timothy 1:10 / 2 Timothy 4:3. One of the problems in the church in Crete was their ungodly attitude and behaviour as Christians, which he goes on to describe.

It appears the older men in the church have some behavioural problems, which Titus was to address in his teaching to them.

Titus is to teach them to be ‘temperate’, which means not given to excess in anything, ‘worthy of respect’, means a calm and sensible attitude at all times, ‘self-controlled’, means sober-minded, someone who can think clearly.

‘Sound in faith’, means to cling on to the fundamental doctrines of Christianity, ‘in love’, means the highest kind of love demonstrated in our actions towards others, and ‘endurance’, means patience, the ability to be constant. Paul often refers to these last three in his letters, 1 Corinthians 13:13 / 1 Thessalonians 1:3 / 1 Thessalonians 1:3.

The Older Women

‘Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good.’ Titus 2:3

The older women also appear to have some behavioural problems which Titus will address in his teaching to them. They are to be ‘reverent in the way they live’, which means befitting of something sacred, ‘not to be slanderers’, means not false accusers, not to be ‘addicted to much wine’, means not to become enslaved by wine, don’t drink too much.

They have also to ‘teach what is good’, this would be what they teach the younger women, Titus 2:4-5.

The Younger Women

‘Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.’ Titus 2:4-5

Once the women have been taught how to live and act properly, they should go on to teach the young women how to live and act properly.

Paul here gives us a list of seven things that he urges the older women to teach the younger women.

1. They should teach them to love their husbands.

2. They should teach them to love their children.

3. They should teach them to exercise self-control in order to conduct themselves with dignity.

4. They should teach them to live a pure and holy life.

5. They should teach them to take responsibility in their homes, in caring for their husbands and children, 1 Timothy 5:14.

6. They should teach them to concentrate on having a good character, 1 Peter 3:1-6.

7. They should teach them to be submissive to their husbands in order to present a good home in which children can be nurtured, Ephesians 5:22-23 / Colossians 3:18 / 1 Timothy 2:11 / 1 Timothy 2:14.

Why are the older women to teach the younger women these things?

Simply because their behaviour as Christians will reflect the God they serve. If they truly belong to God, then their lives must reflect Who they belong to. If they act like godly women, this will set an example to others around them, in order that others won’t have a legitimate reason to speak against God and His holy Word.

As Christians, we all must set the right example to those around us, whether it be in our homes, at work or in the supermarket.

The Young Men

‘Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled.’ Titus 1:6

The young men aren’t exempt in their behaviour, Titus is to encourage them to be self-controlled, which is sober-minded, someone who can think clearly.

Titus Himself

‘In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.’ Titus 2:7-8

Notice that Titus is to set the young men an example in the way he lives, Philippians 3:17 / 1 Timothy 4:12. Anyone who preaches and teaches or leads the church in any way must lead by example, if the church is shown a bad example, then the flock will follow. If godly living isn’t important to leadership, then godly living won’t be important to anyone in the congregation. Leaders must set an example no matter how much opposition they receive from others, 2 Timothy 2:25.

It appears that Paul is not only concerned with Titus’ behaviour but his teaching too. It’s a Biblical rule that all those who teach must teach what is in accordance with what God says in His Word, 1 Corinthians 4:6. If it’s an opinion, then say it is an opinion but if God clearly says it, then say this is what God says.

Titus is to teach in such a way that he will be free from accusation, and if he sets a good example, then anyone who makes any accusations against him will be shamed.

The Slaves

‘Teach slaves to be subject to their masters in everything, to try to please them, not to talk back to them, and not to steal from them, but to show that they can be fully trusted, so that in every way they will make the teaching about God our Saviour attractive.’ Titus 2:9-10

Paul now instructs Titus to teach the slaves, ‘doulos’ to be obedient to their masters, Ephesians 5:24 / Ephesians 6:5 / 1 Timothy 6:1.

How do you become a slave?

Well, you could become a slave in one of three ways.

1. Your father was a slave and if his dad was a slave and he was born into that family, he was the owner’s property. The owner could sell him and do whatever he wants with him.

2. Maybe he was a thief who stole money and under Jewish or even Roman law, if you stole and couldn’t pay it back, then they can take you as a slave.

3. Maybe he was a murderer, but instead of killing him, they would decide to give him to the victim’s family and the family could take him or sell him or do whatever they liked.

So whatever reason, a slave has no rights whatsoever, he was a piece of property, and his master owned him. And at the slave market they would auction them off, then someone would buy them for so many shekels and now the slave belongs to him.

Imagine when the slave’s new master takes him home. Who is going to supply a bed for the slave? His master is going to supply a place for him to sleep. In the morning, where is the slave going to get food from? The slave doesn’t have any food with him, so his master has to feed him.

The master has to feed and clothe and provide a place for his slave to sleep. The slave depended completely on the master for his life, he had nothing if the master did not provide it for him. That meant that the slave didn’t worry because he simply depended on the master, Deuteronomy 15:12-17.

The importance of the slave’s obedience and behaviour is that they might win their master over for Christ. The slaves ‘shouldn’t talk back’ to their masters, they shouldn’t criticise them because all this does is undermine their master’s will.

The slave shouldn’t ‘steal’ from their masters, the slave would often be entrusted with goods, but this didn’t mean they belonged to the slave, Acts 5:2-3. Trust is always an important part of any relationship, if a Christian slave can’t be trusted then the master would conclude that God Himself couldn’t be trusted.

Once again, it’s all about setting the right example so that others may see the impact Christ has had in our lives which in turn would lead them to want to know Christ, Matthew 5:16 / John 13:34-35. If we live this way, we show the beauty of the Gospel to others.

‘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, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.’ Titus 2:11-14

Paul tells us that despite God forging people’s sins in the Old Testament period, it wasn’t until Christ came, Luke 3:6 / Romans 5:15 and died was His grace revealed to mankind, Romans 5:8 / Ephesians 2:1-10. God wants everyone to respond to His grace, 2 Peter 3:9 and He wants us to be thankful for His grace, 2 Corinthians 4:15.

When we become Christians and receive God’s grace, it’s not a licence for us to live our lives however we like, Romans 6:1-2, God’s grace teaches us to say ‘no’ to anything which goes against God’s will, it says ‘no’ to the world and ‘no’ to self, Romans 12:1.

Everything we do in our Christian lives is purely out of gratitude for what God has done and given us, we don’t do things because we have to, we don’t do things because we want to. We’re not obedient because we have to, we’re obedient because we want to, and God’s grace is our motivation, 1 Corinthians 15:10 / 2 Corinthians 4:15.

All this training, encouraging and rebuking is what any parent does for her child. God wants us to live self-controlled, righteous lives so that we can show the world that we take God seriously.

Ah, ‘the blessed hope,’ the hope that Jesus is coming back to bring an end to this world and take the faithful with Him to heaven, 2 Peter 3:10-13 / Romans 5:1-5 / 1 Corinthians 1:7 / 1 Timothy 1:1.

Notice that Jesus is described as ‘our great God and Saviour’ and He will come again in all His glory, Acts 1:9-11 / Colossians 3:4 / 1 John 3:2. Lenski says, ‘Jesus Christ is here called our God and Saviour. One person is referred to and not two.’

What a humbling thought, ‘Jesus gave Himself ‘. Not only did He redeem us from our sins, but the day is coming when He shall redeem us from this world, Isaiah 53:12 / John 10:17-18 / 2 Corinthians 5:15 / Galatians 1:4 / Galatians 2:20 / 1 Timothy 2:6 / Hebrews 12:2 / 1 Peter 2:21-24.

The reason He redeemed us is simply because we couldn’t redeem ourselves, no matter how many good deeds we do, Mark 10:45 / 1 Timothy 2:6. He redeemed us and purified us from our sins, with His precious blood which was shed at Calvary, Ephesians 5:26-27 / Hebrews 9:14 / 1 John 1:7-9 / Revelation 21:9-11, and because of what Christ did, and our obedience to the Gospel, we are His people, we belong to Him, Exodus 15:16 / Exodus 19:5-6 / 1 Peter 2:5 / 1 Peter 2:9-10 / Acts 20:28.

Christians should always be ‘eager to do what is good’, out of appreciation for everything Jesus has done for them and is doing for them, and what He will do in the future for them 1 Corinthians 15:10 / 2 Corinthians 4:15 / Galatians 4:18 / Galatians 6:10 / Ephesians 2:10.

Remember Christians do God’s work, not for their salvation but because of it, Philippians 2:12-13 / 1 John 4:19. If anyone is trying to get to heaven solely based on their works, then they’ve missed the point. We work for the Lord, not because we have to but because we want to, and the driving factor of our works is the grace of God.

Jesus gave, He volunteered, He gave Himself, He gave everything He could give. He redeemed us, He paid the ransom. We are redeemed from sin for His service. Remember the ransom wasn’t paid to Satan because our souls don’t belong to Him but to God.

The One to whom we owe a debt because of our sin is God, not Satan. Jesus paid the debt, or perhaps put even better, He paid the penalty for our sins. We earned the death penalty, spiritually, for our sin, and Jesus paid that ‘debt’ when He died on the cross for our sins, Romans 6:23.

‘These, then, are the things you should teach. Encourage and rebuke with all authority. Do not let anyone despise you.’ Titus 2:15

Everything Paul has spoken about regarding the older men, older women, young men, younger women, slaves is what Titus is to teach them. he was to encourage them and teach them with the authority of the Scriptures because that’s where the Christians’ authority comes from, not man, Matthew 28:18 / 1 Timothy 4:16 / 1 Timothy 5:20 / 2 Timothy 4:1-2.

When Titus teaches from God’s Word and lives in accordance with God’s will, he doesn’t need to feel despised by anyone because what he’s teaching and the way he’s living are commanded by God Himself.

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