Saturday, 14 August 2021
“They claim to know God, but in their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing any good.” -Titus 1:16
The epistle to Titus was written by Apostle Paul aimed at building the church at Crete and also its young pastor Titus against false teachers and unfaithful ministers, who were constantly attacking the believers in the Church. Paul identified the root cause of the issue as lack of sound doctrine and strong leadership. Paul had carried out an effective ministry throughout the Roman Empire, with thousands of lives being transformed. But he knew very well that a church should be built on Christ and not on personalities. Therefore, the apostle took every effort to train up new leaders like Titus, Timothy and others.
In this chapter while emphasizing the right leadership in the church, he closes the chapter highlighting the works of the hypocrites /corrupt ones. In Titus 1:15 Paul says ---“but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted.” He then says that such men and women claim to know God but they deny Him, through disobedience in their lives. Our way of living will tell others what we are. Our conduct speaks much of what we believe. We are open letters /newspapers of Christ to the world (2 Cor. 3:3).
When good men try to see the good of others, corrupt ones will see nothing but evil. They try every effort to mock and harm others. Our minds are the filters through which we perceive good and evil. The corrupt mind will colour even the good they see and hear, as evil. They start judging, mocking and harming fellow believers. If we tune our minds to God and His Word, then we start to see more goodness in our fellow beings. If our minds are filled with pure and noble thoughts, we will have hardly any room for what is evil. Phil. 4:8 says, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
In Titus 1: 5 Paul refers to certain unfinished work and tells Titus; “that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city;” he further explains/ instructs on the quality of the elders to be appointed, giving details – especially the organization of churches and a need for teaching in doctrine and practical living. The false teachers were influential and were affecting many. Paul exemplifies the good qualities of a leader and points to the fact that such a strong personality only can influence people and deter them from being carried away by wrong doctrines. This is applicable to everyone and we all need to be carrying these qualities and influence others around us who are being carried away by the corrupt ways of this world. The attributes of a leader listed in Titus 1: 6 -8 starts with “a person above reproach” and ends with "self -controlled.” Only such a person will be able to exhort sound doctrine and refute those who contradict. Let us strive to be men of God “thoroughly equipped for every good work”—growing in the knowledge of God’s Word. Then we will be equipped to Impart, Impress and Improve others!
Let each of us ask this question to ourselves – Will the Lord find me as a person of integrity to be His mouth both to the Church and to the world?
"Heavenly Father help me to change the way I live,
so that Christ Jesus can use my life to influence others.