- The Explore the Bible lesson for August 11, 2019 focuses on Titus 1:1-5, 10-16.
There’s a song I grew up singing in church titled “We are Soldiers.” The song was a staple in my childhood church. It has messages of being strong as soldiers in the army, fighting the good fight of faith, even while crying and holding up the bloodstained banner until death. These messages remind me, at times, I may have to live a life of opposition in order to hold up the truth of God’s word.
False teaching continues to exist. Individuals are sharing a message based on their individual worldly experiences, their desires, comfort and what they believe is best, not what the God’s word says. As Christians, we are called to share the truth, even when it is in opposition to what’s comfortable. Holding up the truth is right but may not be easy. However, believers are accountable for rejecting false teachers and teachings.
Servant’s Heart (Titus 1:1-3)
Paul uses his salutation to help us respond correctly to the things of God. Paul’s goal is to point us in the direction of eternal life, a life God promised to us before the beginning of time. He lets us know he has been trusted with sharing this message of God, by God. He writes to Titus, another young pastor to receive all Christ Jesus gives to him.
As servants of Jesus Christ, how will you share the gospel?
Purposeful Action (Titus 1:4-5)
In these two verses, we glean that Titus joyfully embraced Jesus Christ. Additionally, he and Paul developed a longstanding deep love and mutual respect. Their connection was such that Paul referred to Titus as “my true son in our common faith” (Titus 1:4). The Christian fellowship of these two combined with Titus’ willingness to serve made him a perfect candidate for service to the Lord.
Titus is charged with appointing elders who love God. He is pastor in a place of high immorality. Yet he is to identify and appoint men who are strong believers, not easily influenced by the corruption around them. Charles Stanley in his Life Principles Bible notes present-day Christians “live in a society that is moving away from God; as such, we must stay steadfast and live godly lives so that others will see Christ living through us and become saved.”
What purposeful action are you called to?
Opposition Addressed (Titus 1:10-16)
Many people talk very much like Christians, yet without walking out their talk in everyday life, some more than others. Their aims are dishonest; thus, their teaching is false, disrupting households of faith and as such they must be silenced. The Crete false prophets are described as liars, evil brutes and lazy gluttons by one of their own fellow Cretans.
Unfortunately, the descriptions are true. Titus is encouraged to silence the false teaching and share a sound doctrine of faith. The hope is that the people will be faithful servants of Jesus, rejecting false teaching and ungodly human commands.
Paul continues by sharing, purity sees purity, unbelievers see no purity they only see the worst because their minds and consciences are corrupt. Individuals may claim to know God, but as believers, our actions will reflect the godly character of Jesus Christ.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for being a good God. Thank you for helping us to develop a servant’s heart, to be purposeful in our work for you and faithful even during opposition. In Jesus name, we pray, Amen.
Lisa M. Rainey, PhD., is a member of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Mansfield, Texas.