Our last reading in Titus: Titus 3:9-15
v9: Either a person is going to be mindful and responsible to engage in good works OR they are going to engage in contentions and foolishness concerning debatable things where little or no resolution is ever reached (ie they are going to waste their time). Time is too precious to be wasted on anything other than doing the will of G-d (good)
· Strivings/conflict of the law: There is no need to debate the law. It is clear – as the Word of G-d reveals it. Too often today many want to make the law suit themselves and their lifestyles so they try to justify why they do what we do, or they say “but that was for the Old Testament so surely it is not applicable to us today…??” Again, the law and keeping or not keeping the law doesn’t save us but it sure shows us what the heart of G-d (who never changes) is on every issue that we face. The law teaches us how to live righteously.
v10: Wow! This is a verse that would come under heavy fire in today’s society Here is a clear example of a New Testament law: If someone is contentious for the purpose of causing division among members of the body of Messiah we are commanded (very clearly) to reject them (Matt 5:29-30?)
v11: This man or woman’s actions manifest that he/she is going to be condemned. I think this shows just how serious G-d is about having unity in His body – the church.
v12: Artemas or Tychicus are going to relieve Titus of his duties in Crete.
· Nicopolis means “victorious”. A city that overcomes.
v13: The lawyer – these were people who were experts in law – this could mean either secular law or Torah law or an expert in both sets of law.
v14: Some versions say we need to be devoted to good works, make good deeds a priority, excel in good works etc
One of Paul’s primary concerns was that we do not live unfruitful lives. We need to bear much fruit. Fruit (good works) testifies that we are saved (John 15:1-8)
v15: Paul frequently begins his epistles with grace and ends them with grace. Grace not only brings salvation, but it also works in our lives to cause us to deny those things that are against G-d. Grace helps us to produce fruit – those things that are pleasing to G-d (Matt 3:8)
May we be people who live lives that are pleasing to G-d!