ReNEWed COVENANT Ministry
SABBATH BIBLE STUDY
Compiled by JS LOWTHER
A Community of Election and Order
(cont. from Why Can’t We Have Community?)
Sound Doctrine: Faith, Love and Endurance
(An expository reading of Titus)
Titus 1:4 To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour.
Tit_1:5 For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting (need correcting), and ordain Elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:
Tit 1:6 If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.
Tit 1:7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God (house law keeper or lawyer) ; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;
Tit 1:8 But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate;
Tit 1:9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
Tit 1:10 For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision:
Tit 1:11 Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.
Tit 1:12 One of the Cretan prophets (Epi-men-ides), said, The Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, slow bellies. (the poem we call the Epimenides paradox)
Tit 1:13 Paul said- This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke (the Cretans) sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;
Tit 1:14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.
Tit 1:15 Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.
Tit 1:16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.
Tit_2:1 But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:
So cracking into this right away in chapter 2 we see ‘sound doctrine’ which Paul is exhorting Titus to, in what seems as a 2nd person address in the 1st person way. In other word’s Paul is telling Titus what to do “thou”, but he has inserted the 2nd person into the corrections of order Titus is to give the elders in Crete.
So Paul is so confident that Titus will do as Paul would do- he speaks as if he were Titus speaking to an Elder, while speaking to Titus and thereby giving both instruction.
And the subject matter is directly related to ‘Sound doctrine’ as it was prior.
Tit 1:9 that the Elder must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.
this was directed at the many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision who taught for shameful gain what they ought not to teach.
Tit 1:11 They must be silenced, since they are upsetting whole families ..
and because Paul had observed the witness of the poet /prophet Epimenides was true, that the Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.”
Tit 1:13 Therefore (the Cretan’s need to be rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith… this is an exhortation to the Elder through Titus from Paul as to the purpose of the correction needed to establish ‘sound doctrine’.
Sound in doctrine and sound in faith, remember the theme of starting with truth and in the absolute narrative of God who can not lie, ‘the God who is incapable of falsehood’, therefore faith is sound and doctrine are sound, sure strong and foundational because this common faith is the foundation of Doctrine. it established the Elder and the family under him.
And so what is Paul admonishing Titus to teach and teach the Elder in perspective, that the Elders spoken of in chapter 1 will teach to those they instruct: “what accords with sound doctrine”, teach these Cretan who are testifyably prone to a lying, evil beastly behavior and lazy glutinous lives- this is part of the unsoundness of the Cretan family that needs replaced by that which is sound, that is based in the soundness of the God who does not lie, the faith of the Elect.
It is important to notice this far into the text that the Circumcised Jewish myth teachers would have no power of persuasion if the faith of the Cretan family church is sound and based in sound doctrine.
Just because some families are of the Cretan people are Elected to have this sound faith it is obviously imperative to their development as the church to continue to learn sound doctrine based in this Election.
In other words it is necessary, it is for the ‘sake of’ one Elected to continue to know truth which accords with Godliness as it is taught from God’s Word and Law.
And so in this way Paul says to the Elders though Titus, confirm Lawful attribute among the aged men, aged women, young women, young men and servants. All of these are admonished in sound doctrine based in sound faith as Elect who can be recipient of the knowledge of truth which accords with Godliness.
And from this point it must be remembered that this instruction is correcting a former unlawful non-Christian culture by laying forth the ordinances of God to correct this by one principle figure in the family church the Elder who was prior called the over seer / bishop and the ‘steward of God’ , the θεουG2316 οικονομονG3623 / God’s house lawyer , establishing plainly the centrality to the Law of God in the home. Oikonomon is a general term which means a manager of another’s law or rules, when this applies to God, it leads us directly to God’s Law being adjudged in the family. You will see that the adjective form of Presbus was applied to the Elders of the masculine form… in Titus 1:5-that is a specific Elder in a family who is called ‘the Elder’ of the family, this adjective for is distinguished from the noun for the general ‘old men’ and general ‘old women’, this is not because they are not Elect by possession of faith, but because the Elder of Titus 1:5 who was addressed first was the Over seer, whereas what we will see next is non-Over seers who are truly Elders in the normal sense of the word, that is aged men, gray haired men: like Grandma and Grandpa, dad and mom, uncle and aunt, great uncle and great aunt as we say in our culture. These are Presbus men and women admonished by God’s House law keep to be better than they were raised in the Heathen world they are from by the establishment of sound doctrine risen up from sound faith.
The Over-seer was set in order as part of the correction of the church in cities to correct what was occurring in Tit_1:11 to silenced those who were upsetting whole families, that is the opposite, which is to ‘set up whole families’ according to the Law of God and a steward of God a house law keeper an Over seer is needed for this work as directed by the Law of God in Deu_1:13 and Exo_18:20-22. These are those “provide out of all the people the able men, such as fear God, the men of truth who hating covetousness to be placed over families of the church, they are considered rulers of the citied in this sense according to the ordering of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens:
To which YHWH said to Moses
Exo 18:22 And let them judge the people at all seasons
This is why the house needs theou oikonomos / God’s House lawyer
this is why the Law organically speaks of Lev 19:32 At the face of a gray one G4171.4 you shall rise up,G1817 andG2532 you shall esteemG5091 the faceG4383 of an older one; (πρεσβυτερουG4245 A-GSMC ) andG2532 you shall fearG5399 G3588 your God.G2316 G1473 I am G1473 the LORD G2962 G3588 your God.G2316 G1473
These 2 different but related categories are of the general honor due to all aged men and women and that honor or esteem, value given to the Elder the Over -seer. This is directly connected to the organic nature of the 5th commandment of
Exo_20:12 Honour thy father and thy mother, that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest live long on the good land, which the Lord thy God gives to thee.
This is why Paul says as if speaking to the Elder them selves:
Tit 2:1 But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:
Tit_2:2 That the aged men (Pres-bu-tas / πρεσβυταςG4246 Noun-A Plural Masculine) be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
(Notice the list of qualities the aged man is to be exhorted to :sober,G3524 G1510.1 grave/serious,G4586 temperate/discreet,G4998 being soundG5198 1. in the faith,G4102 2. in theG3588 love,G26 3. in theG3588 endurance.G5281
Tit_2:3 The aged women (pres-but-idas / πρεσβυτιδαςG4247 N-APF ) likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness /a consecrated character , not false accusers/ slanderers/ same word as devil, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
Tit_2:4 That they may teach: the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
Tit 2:5 To be discreet, chaste / pure, keepers at home /house keepers, good, obedient / submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
Tit_2:6 Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded.
Tit_2:7 In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing un-corruptness, gravity, sincerity,
Tit 2:8 Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.
Note these 2 new adjectives next :
1. young women / neas / νεαςG3501 A-APF
2. Young men / neoterous /νεωτερουςG3501 A-APM-C
All of these attributes that Paul is reminding Titus of to remind the Over seer of to rind the old men and old women of the family of is for the exhortation of young men and young women whose life goal is in the preparing to to become leaders of families , and for some who have the calling, to be men who are prepared to become sound aged men capable of being selected as an over seer, the Elder them self.
Tit 2:9 Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again (disputing,G483 anit-lego, the last time we say this word it was translated as ‘gainsayer’ in the KJV in Tit_1:9 and it was referring to the insubordinate, empty, deceiving talk of the circumcision who spread their Jewish fables in upsetting whole houses… connection);
Tit_2:10 Not purloining / defrauding/ or embezzling, but showing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.
(I personally like the way the ABP says this:
but belief all demonstrating good that the teachingG1319 G3588 of God our deliverer should be adorned G285 / kept in order in all things. It is fascinating to see the consistent-ness of Paul’s introduction to this point in connection to the common faith.)
Tit 2:11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
Tit 2:12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
Tit 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
Tit_2:14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity / lawlessness (anomias) , and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
The thing’s Paul says here in the end of this chapter as we have it is powerful IF it can affect you.
That from the highest position, the Elder, the Over-seer, God’s steward God’s Lawyer or Judge in the Ecclesiastical families of 10, 50’s, 100’s and 1000’s in the city… from that Lawful ordained position all the way to the slave the doulous, the one who serves his master… to them all who seen it, to those to whom it has appeared to all of those the free-gift of God’s grace has come; and with the free-gift of salvation it appears and it continues to teach us and instruct us.
The ESV says it like this:
Tit_2:12 training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age,
Tit 2:13 waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,
Tit 2:14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.
The point to be made in our day and in the days of Titus coming to the Cretan is that Christ did not reveal his Grace to you (the Elder or the servant) to forget His Law.
He did so to take you as part of a people zealous for good works (positive action), this is intimately tied to the reason why Christ gave himself for his Elect, why he redeemed His Elect from their lawlessness their sin… he did so to purify for Him self a people Zealous for Good works.
renounce ungodliness and worldly passions (things the world impassions you to do against the word of God’s order)
, and to live self-controlled , upright, and godly lives in the present age,
(Listen, Christians of a Common faith are not only controlling them self to not sin, to not engage in unlawful passions by self control, but they are also standing upright zealously, and living godly lives zealously directing their ways in the path of YHWH’s good works. those are positive action which the LORD leads you to and says be my Elect Zealous for my law.
This is how a servant of God is
Tit 2:13 waiting for our blessed hope and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.
This is how Paul can tell Titus to
Tit_2:15 speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
Tit 2:15 Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.
Because not even Paul and Titus are preaching things of their own, they are preaching the knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness as it is revealed in the commandments of the word of God, time and time again.