Titus is a one chapter letter from Paul to Titus whom he calls “my true child in a common faith”. Paul is the perfect example of Jesus commandment to “go and make disciples”. He had many spiritual offspring – Timothy and Titus being two of the most notable that he wrote to. It is important that we learn this lesson from Paul – we are to go and do likewise – to make disciples of those in our patch. We are to reach others for Jesus – leading them to the truth and bringing them into a saving relationship with Jesus but then taking them under our wing and teaching them how to become like Jesus in their daily lives. We are to model and train them how to live – to help them learn as we have learned – and to follow us to the cross. Discipleship starts with us being a disciple first and then moves to us becoming a disciplemaker. How are you doing on those two fronts?
Paul makes it clear what his job really is: “in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior”. He is the messenger of God’s eternal truth to us. He is protector of God and His character. He is delivering the promise that God gave before the world was created. He is an entrusted deliverer of truth. And so are you and me. We have the same message and the same mission – to tell the world about God’s plan for each person who lives on this planet. To let the world know about the Savior and to let our lives preach that truth every day by how we live. God has entrusted us with that truth. Are you telling others about it? Are you making sure they know the promise of God?
Much of this letter to Titus is a description of the role of an elder or overseer. Much as his letter to Timothy previous, Paul makes a long list of the things that should define the life of a spiritual leader, as well as the things that should not be part of that leader’s life. Here are the things that elders should look like:
– “above reproach
– husband of one wife
– his children are believers
– lover of good
– hold firm to the trustworthy word
– able to give instruction in sound doctrine
– rebuke those who contradict it
And an elder must not be:
– open to the charge of debauchery
– greedy for gain
– empty talkers
– teaching for shameful gain”
Paul has quite a list of requirements here for the office of elder. Character matters much in the Body of Christ. If we are to be part of leading the flock of Jesus we have to have lives that are worthy and Christlike. That doesn’t mean perfect as that is not an achievable measure. It does mean that areas that fall short need to be corrected and worked on – that we have to continually seek to become more like Jesus. And it should never show up like Paul writes here, that someone would “profess to know God, but they deny him by their works”. Life and words have to line up. We have to walk the talk and talk the walk. Are you ready to be used by God because you have worked to have a life like Paul describes here? We all need to work on living this way so we are able to be used to change the world!