In chapter one, verse ten, Paul said there were many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, whose mouths must be stopped because they subvert whole houses, teaching things that they ought not be teaching for filthy lucre’s sakes. Their teaching is not only wrong, their motives are wrong.
In contrast to these false teachers who are teaching for filthy lucre’s sake, he begins chapter two with the words, But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: There are these other teachers that are teaching fallacies, but you, Titus, teach the things which become sound doctrine.
Now in writing to Timothy, Paul said, there will come a time when men will not endure sound doctrine, but having itching ears, will pile up to themselves teachers, who will say the things that are entertaining or say the things that the people are wanting to be said.
I have found that so often times, when a person comes and they say, oh, I need counseling, they really don’t mean that at all. What they are really saying is that I need someone to affirm that the wrong things I am doing, are right. Tell me that I’m okay in doing that. They really don’t want counsel. If you say, well that’s wrong! You shouldn’t do that! Then they will go look for another counselor. They are not interested in just knowing what God’s Word says as a guide for our lives. But they are more interested in just being affirmed in their position.
One of the most important things in the church is sound doctrine. You have to have a solid foundation for your faith. How many times people have built on sand? And there is not a sound foundation for their faith. When the storms come, the house collapses, because it has been built upon sand rather than on a solid foundation.
Doctrine, sound doctrine, is the solid foundation upon which we must build our faith. The proper understanding of God, theology; the proper understanding of Jesus Christ, Cristology; the proper understanding of the Holy Spirit, pneumathology; the proper understanding of man, anthropology, the proper understanding of sin and the proper understanding of salvation.
Of course the theologians have put the big names like, soteriology and eschatology and these others things upon the various doctrines. But don’t be afraid of the big names. But know where you stand and why you stand and how you stand. Study the Word of God. Be strong in the faith.
Paul is telling Titus that he should teach those things, which become sound doctrine.
And then to the various people within the body of Christ, he begins with the older men. 2That the aged (older) men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity (love), in patience. So, sober. If ever there was time that we needed to be sober, it is today. Because we are facing in the world in which we live, sobering situations. And you need to have your full senses.
Paul, the apostle, talking about your Christian liberty, all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
We dare not allow our minds to become so fuzzy, that we cannot think clearly. And so with the older men, the first thing is being sober. Then being grave. Serious in the matters of life.
You know, there comes a time in life when you shouldn’t be just fooling around in the childish kinds of things. So often when a person is young, they’re playing pranks and you know, and doing those foolish kinds of things that later on, they often regret. But by the time you’re old, you should know better. You know, you shouldn’t be ringing doorbells and running. But it’s time to get serious about life. Temperate, moderation, not going overboard on things.
And then sound in three things. You need to be solid in your faith and in your love and in your patience. These three characteristics, you want to be solid in these. Solid in faith. Solid in love and solid in patience. By the time we get older, it is a little easier to be patient than when we were young. There is a certain impatience to youth. You want to get on with life. You want to get things done. But as we get older, we learn to pace ourselves. And we discover that pacing ourselves is very important. We don’t jump off the porch anymore, we let ourselves down easily. You learn that when we get older.
Turning from the teaching of the older men, he turns to the older women. 3The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, There is nothing more beautiful than an older women, who walks in holiness with the Lord.
There is nothing quite as distasteful as an older women, who tries to be a sex pot and has filthy language. Sitting at the bar, drinking, smoking and trying to pickup on men.
We were of course this past week on a short cruise with the family to celebrate fifty years of marital bliss. And the ship is so designed, that to get to parts of the ship, you are sort of forced to go through the casino. And to see these old ladies, with a cigarette hanging out of their mouths, pulling on that one armed bandit.
As Paul tells, Titus, tell the older women that their behavior becomes holiness. That is, there is a thing of beauty. There is a thing of agelessness, when a person walks with fellowship with the Lord.
not false accusers, They are not to be false accusers. They are not to go around, suspicious, accusing people or suspicioning everybody.
not given to much wine, Now in those days, alcoholism among the older women was a very prevalent problem. There were drunken old ladies. There are many of the, in the Greek literature, there are many accounts and stories of the problems with the older women being drunk. So Paul is telling Timothy to teach them that they are not to be given to much wine.
teachers of good things; They are to be teachers of good things. By the time you get old, you have gained a lot of experiences. You’ve been through that university that probably is the finest university going, if you can afford the tuition—that university of experience, as you’ve learned a lot of important lesson. And as you get older, it is good to be able to share the lessons that you’ve learned with the younger people, is such a way, that they can gain and benefit—not be turned off, but they can gain and benefit from what you have learned.
In the ministry, I struggled for many years, seventeen years, I’ve struggled. But in that struggle, I learned a lot of important lessons. In that seventeen years, I learned to teach the Word of God, rather than constantly just sort rebuking people and telling them how bad they were and how they needed to reform. I learned how to teach the Word of God. And I learned that the ministry is just that, it is ministering to people. I learned to give. And the beautiful thing, that having gone through the negative experiences, I was able to train young men, who desired to go into the ministry. I was able to train them so that they could avert the pitfalls that I wallowed in for so many years. I could share with them the things that I learned, giving them a tremendous advantage so that they didn’t have to go through the same negative experiences that I went through. And that’s the advantage of being older and having the advantage of having a lot of experiences. You learn by your experiences. Then you can pass on what you have learned in order to enable the younger ones that come along, that they don’t have to fall into the same quagmire that you were once in.
Now the older women are to be teachers of good things. And in verse four, 4That they may teach the young women to be sober, Drinking is a problem among a lot of young wives today.
to love their husbands, to love their children, Now, in Ephesians it says, husbands love your wives. And I’ve heard people say, well, you know, there is no command for the wives to love the husbands. Well, just a minute! The older women are to teach the younger women to love their husbands and to love their children.
God, when He created us, created man with a capacity of reproduction and He created certain biological instincts and all, within us. And it was God’s purpose that a man should leave his mother and father and cleave unto his wife and they two become one flesh. In order that the children might grow up in an environment of love and security, learning from their parents about God and about God’s love for them.
And how blessed is that person who goes up in that kind of a loving environment. And the greatest thing, the greatest gift that you can give to your children, is a home with a loving environment, where you love them and they know that you love them. And they feel that security of love.
I thank God for the home that I grew up in, the love that I received from both of my parents, the security of that love. I cherish the home that God gave to me. Kay and I sought to provide for our children that same kind of environment. That they might grow up in a home where they know they are loved, they know that they have the support of mom and dad, because of love.
So the older women are to teach the younger women that they are to love their husbands and they are to love their children so you have this loving environment within the home, in which the children might grow up.
5To be discreet, Also they are to be discreet.
chaste, They are to be chaste or pure.
keepers at home, Now I know that we are living in a society when there are a lot of pressures to have a lot of things. And in the pressure to have a lot of things, many times in the families they feel a necessity for the wife to go to work. Let me just express my opinion here and that is, if at all possible, I feel that the home is much better off if the husband becomes the bread winner and the wife is the keeper at home.
I think that a part of the breakdown of our society today stems from latchkey kids. I think that a mother is doing a disservice to their child, if in order that they might have an extra car, a nicer house and a lot of these extra little things, she goes to work in order to provide them. Because you can ply yourself with material things, but you can starve at the same time, your family, of spiritual things and of love.
While our children were growing up, we made it a point that they would never come home to an empty house. Kay was always there when they got home from school. And we felt that that was very important. She was a mother. She was a keeper at home. And she was that until the children were all grown and out of the house. Once the children were all grown, she was of course, by that time an older women, and so she took this verse of Scripture, to teach the younger women, the good things. And how they were to love their husbands and to love their children. And of course that’s how the Friday morning women’s study began as Kay took the younger women and began to instruct them on being a good mother, on being a good wife, a good homekeeper. And this is just vital and important. But she didn’t enter that ministry until she had fulfilled her own ministry to our children. I believe that the mother has one of the most important ministries in the world. And that is the ministry to those little ones that are growing up in the home, training them, instructing them, teaching them in the ways of the Lord. What a vital and important ministry. Kay and I have talked this over a lot, and you know, if we were able to win the whole world to the Lord and yet we lost our own children, we would feel that our lives were a failure! I thank God that our children are walking with the Lord. We do have some concerns about some of our grandchildren. But, thank God, we were able to share from our hearts with them on this trip. We are praying for them. Some of them are going through some pretty critical stages in their lives. We want to see God working in their hearts and their lives. We appreciate your prayers also. The Bible says, pray one for another. But it’s so important that we not lose our own family, because we are so busy “doing the Lord’s work”, that we lose our own.
good, obedient to their own husbands, (Now the women’s lib doesn’t like that Scripture.) that the word of God be not blasphemed. So often, in a home, sadly, it is the woman who is following the Lord. Sometimes the husband sort of lags or sometimes is even opposed to spiritual things. And so Paul instructs Titus to tell the older women to teach the younger women, to be obedient to their husbands in order that the Word of God be not blasphemed. Don’t bring a reproach upon the Word of God because of a nasty attitude that you might have toward your husband.
6Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. Turning now to young men, exhort them to be sober minded. It’s time to get serious with life. It’s time to quit goofing off and to become sober minded.
7In all things (Then in all things, coming now to Titus.) shewing thyself a pattern of good works: In other words, you set the example, Titus. You set the pattern for them in your good words.
in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, In doctrine, showing uncorruptness and seriousness and sincerity. Titus also was a young man as was Timothy, that is, younger than Paul. And anybody under, you know, forty is quite young, now. And so he is exhorting Titus to be the pattern or example in his good works and in his doctrine, living a pure live, uncorruptness, serious and sincere.
8Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; That your speech be sound, so that you cannot be condemned.
that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you. Now, I have found that is quite impossible. There are those that are just wanting to say something evil about you. And they carefully peruse everything you say, carefully peruse the tapes and every book, in order to find some evil thing to say, because that’s the way they are made. They feel that God has called them to be critical, judgmental and that you know, their duty is to find fault and flaws in everything. But as far as possible, Titus, just stay straight. Straight with the Word. Sound speech that cannot be condemned.
That he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed. Now, I’ve come to the conclusion that some of these people have no shame.
9Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, Then he turns to servants. You see, he is dealing with the minister. He is dealing with the older women, the younger women, the older men, the younger men, and now servants. He exhorts the servants to be obedient unto their masters.
and to please them well in all things; not answering again; To please them well in all things, not talking back. If you are an employed, as a Christian, you should be the finest employee, that your boss has. You should seek to go the extra mile, to be as diligent as possible in order that you might set an example of what God would have us to be. Not talking back, not answering back when you are told to do something, not arguing about it. Just going ahead and doing it as unto the Lord.
10Not purloining, That is, you are not to steal. You’re not to take pencils from the job. You’re not to take extra time on your break because that also is stealing.
When we were building the sanctuary here, we had a large crew of fellows that we had hired from the church. They would punch in at eight o’clock and then decide to have a prayer meeting. They would pray for a half an hour to an hour, you know. Then they had to go to the restroom and it was time for the coffee break. That should not be, should not be. Because in a sense, you are being paid to do the work. You are not being paid to witness to someone else on the job, taking his time and your time. Witness during the break or during the lunch hour. Be careful about those things.
but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn (that word adorn in the Greek, kosmeo, is the word from which we get cosmetics.)
That they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things. That your life might just show the beauty—adorn, so that people are drawn to God.
11For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, How thankful we are for the grace of God! If it were not for the grace of God, none of us would have a chance. And the grace of God has appeared to all of us.
But what does it teach us? Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, Now, some people think that the grace of God teaches us that I can do anything I want, because the grace of God will cover it.
And as Paul was teaching of the grace of God, he ran into these people that took this distorted view of God’s grace. So Paul is talking about the grace of God, he said, where sin abounds, grace does much more abound. Shall we then sin freely that grace might abound? God forbid! But that’s not what grace teaches us.
Grace teaches that we need to deny ungodliness and the worldly lust. Those things we are to get rid of. We are to deny them.
And that we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; We should live soberly and righteously and godly, in this present world, as Christians. This is how I’m to live. I’m to deny ungodliness and the worldly lusts, or the lust for the things of the world. I need to live soberly and righteously.
13Looking for that blessed hope, As I look for the blessed hope. Now in chapter one, verse two, he tells us in hope of eternal life. That’s the blessed hope—eternal life!
This is the record (1 John 5:11-12), that God has given to us eternal life. This life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life.
For as Moses (John 3:14-15) lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.
For God (John 3:16) so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him would not perish, but have life everlasting.
And so I am to live soberly and righteously and Godly in this present world, as I look for that blessed hope, that eternal life that God has promised to me. That life of God imparted to me.
In verse seven of chapter three of Titus, Paul says, that being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to hope of eternal life. So it is the hope, the blessed hope, eternal life through Jesus Christ. And that is predicated, the hope is predicated upon the promises of God. Again back to chapter one, verse two, in hope of eternal life, which God that cannot lie, promised!
So it is the promise of God to those who would believe upon Jesus, that they would receive the gift of God, which is eternal life. That’s God gift to those who put their trust in His Son, Jesus Christ.
And we look for the blessed hope and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; And we look for the glorious appearing of the great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.
I believe that it was by design, God’s design, and that it was God’s purpose that every generation believe that it was the generation that would see the coming of the Lord. The early church believed that the Lord was going to return in their generation. They were looking for the return of Jesus Christ. And I believe that God so designed things that they would be looking for the return of Jesus Christ in their generation. And I believe that God has intended that every succeeding generation believe that they believe that they are the last generation, that the Lord will return in their generation. And in reality, we are the generation that we’re going to see the return of the Lord, one way or another. He’s going to come for us one way or the other, either in a personal rapture or in the rapture of the church.
But believing that we are the last generation, does several things. First of all, it gives us a sense of urgency for getting the gospel out. We realize that time is short! And thus we need to get the gospel out in our generation. Well, that’s true in every generation. Every generation needs to get the gospel to their generation. We can’t trust that the next generation can reach our generation. It’ll be gone. So our obligation is to reach our generation with the gospel. And it gives the urgency, the sense of urgency, in getting the gospel out.
Secondly, I believe that it gives us a proper view of the material things. As Paul speaks of the soon coming of the Lord, in His letter to the Corinthians, let your every contact with the world, be as light as possible.
And I believe it keeps us from getting too involved in earthly, material things, to realize and to know that the Lord is coming soon. It gives us the proper attitude toward material possessions. Realizing that they are all going to burn. That they aren’t the most important thing in life.
And then I believe that it has a very purifying effect upon our lives, how we live.
When I was a boy, I was taught the rapture of the church. And they used to sort of warn us, that the rapture could happen at any time, which was correct. And when the rapture takes place, you surely don’t want to be doing things that would be displeasing to the Lord. And that’s right, too. But that certainly did have a tremendous effect upon me, as a young boy growing up. It kept me from doing a lot of things that I might have otherwise done. And it worried me whenever I was doing something that I shouldn’t do, because I was always sort of praying, Lord, don’t come now! Wait an hour! The purifying effect of knowing that the Lord could come at any moment.
John said (1 John 3:2), beloved, now are we the Sons of God. It doesn’t yet appear what we are going to be, but we know that when He appears, we’re going to be like Him, because we are going to see Him as He is. And then John adds (1 John 3:3), and he who has this hope in Him, purifies himself even as He is pure.
So that looking at that glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. Knowing that it could happen at any time, gives us the sense of urgency in getting the gospel out, it gives us the proper priorities to the things in life, not allowing the material things to burden us down, not getting under the material things. And then it also adds and gives to the holiness and purity in our living.
And speaking then of our Savior, Jesus Christ. How did He become our Savior? 14Who gave himself for us, He became our Savior by giving His life for us.
that he might redeem us from all iniquity, From all of your sins. That he might redeem. The idea is that of purchasing. And the whole thought is that you were once a slave to sin. You were a slave to your own lusts.
As Paul said to the Ephesians (Ephesians 2:1-3), in times past, you walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, that even now works in the children of disobedience, among whom you all had your manner of living as your were living, as you were living after the lusts of your mind and the lust of your flesh. And you were by nature the children of wrath or destined for wrath, even as others.
But He has redeemed you from all of that! He has washed you and cleansed you from all of the past sin and iniquity of your life. Oh as we sing, what a wonderful Savior, is Jesus, my Jesus! What a wonderful Savior, is Jesus my Lord? Washed me, cleansed me from all of my iniquity. He has redeemed me!
and purify unto himself a peculiar people, He had purified us unto Himself, set us apart for Himself. The vessels of the Lord were sanctified. They were washed and purified for the use of God. And so God wants to use you as a vessel. And so He has purified from the sin, the blotch, and the stain of sin, unto Himself, that you might be a peculiar people.
Now some people take that wrong. They think that they have got to be peculiar. I remember around Los Angeles, who was always standing, looking up to the heavens, so much so that she had a very tan face. And I went up to her one day. I said, how is it that I see you always looking up into heaven? And she said something about the beautiful cloud formations or whatever. But I see you looking up when it’s a clear day. And she said, well, brother, the Lord tells us to watch for His coming. I said but don’t you think that that’s a little weird? To just always be just standing around, looking up? She said, well, the Lord said, we’re a peculiar people. I said, ooh.
But we’re peculiar in the sense that we are zealous of good works. We’re different! Yes! Thank God for the difference. He’s called us to be different from the world. We’re not to live after our lusts. We’re not to live in unrighteousness and in unholiness. We’re to live lives of dedication and consecration unto God, which makes us different. And we are zealous of good works.
Paul said to Titus, 15These things speak, These are the things that you should speak. Now these other people were speaking, you know, things that were deceptive and they were talking, you know, and deceiving as they talked about the things of the law and how you had to be circumcised and so forth.
But these are the things that you are to speak and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee. So, you are to exhort the people and you are to rebuke the people with all authority and let no man despise thee, because you are younger. And so much as he said to Timothy, let no man despise your youth, but be an example. So he said to Titus, and so should be said to every minister of the word of God. Be faithful in the teaching of sound doctrine. Don’t let anybody despise you, but instead you be the example. You set the pattern for good works, showing the people how they should live.
When Paul the apostle met with the elders of Ephesus on his way to Jerusalem (Acts 20:18-21,27), he said you know how that for the space of three years, I have been with you, teaching you and showing you. And a lot of times, our teaching is by example.
There’s a story concerning St. Francis, that he said to one of the young friars. Let’s go into the village and let’s speak to people about Jesus. And so this young friar went into the village with St. Francis. On the way in, he stopped to chat some little children. He patted them. He just showed them love. He stopped and he talked with some of the villagers about the different things. He asked them how they were doing. So after a while, he said to the friar, well, let’s go back to the convent. He said, well I thought we were going to come and we were going to preach to the people. He said, we have been preaching to the people, by the example, by showing the love, and by showing the graciousness. And demonstrating for them, what it is to walk in the consciousness of God and the value and the beauty of living a life of purity and holiness. So speak, exhort and rebuke and let no man despise thee. Let your life be an example.
Father, we ask that You would help us. That we might be consistent in teaching sound doctrine to the people. And Lord, help us that we would teach not just by precept, but we would teach by example, that we might live in such a way that people can see the truth of God being worked out in our lives. And not just teaching that they should love one another but truly loving. Not teaching them that they should be forgiving, but that we would be truly forgiving. So let us Lord, by example, show. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.