Paul to Titus
14 September 2014 PM – Titus 1:1-4 – Tit 14 – Scott Childs
Introduction: This evening we are going to begin a study of the book of Titus. Titus along with the two letters to Timothy are known as the “Pastoral Epistles” because they were written to preachers rather than to churches. Paul wrote this letter after being released from his first Roman imprisonment sometime between AD 63-67. Paul left Titus on the Island of Crete to guide the organization of churches in every town. This letter is to instruct, guide, and encourage him in his work.
Transition: As we consider the introduction of this letter, I want us to look at the servant, the sent one, and the salutation. As we do, watch for principles that can strengthen your walk with the Lord.
1. The Servant
a. His name
1) His Hebrew name was Saul = desired. He was likely named after Saul, the first king of Israel.
a) He was a scholar, trained at the feet of Gamaliel.
(Acts 22:3) “I am verily a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as ye all are this day.”
b) He was a religious Pharisee
(Philippians 3:5) “Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;”
c) He had formerly persecuted Christians
(Philippians 3:6) “Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.”
2) His Roman name was Paul = small or little. Though he was a religious scholar, once he got saved, he humbly went by the name Paul.
b. His title
1) Paul called himself a servant (doulos or bondslave).
“It designated one who was born into his condition of slavery, one bound to his master as his slave, one who was in a permanent relationship to his master, which relationship could only be broken by death, one whose will was swallowed up in the will of his master, one who served his master even to the extent that he disregarded his own interests.” (Wuest)
2) As a servant of God, Paul gave up his rights. He denied himself and took this humble position. He devoted his entire life to serving the Lord.
3) Every Christian ought to humble himself and become a servant of God. We sing the chorus, “After all he’s done for me, how can I do less than give him my best and live for him completely”, but do we really live as servants? A servant’s life is not about seeking prosperity, prestige, and pleasure. When Jesus said the following words, he was describing the life of a bondservant of God.
(Luke 9:23) “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.”
2. The Sent One
The term “apostle” refers to a sent one, a delegate, or messenger; specifically an ambassador of the Gospel; officially a commissioner of Christ (apostle) (with miraculous powers). Thayer
a. The Master
1) Paul called himself an apostle of Jesus Christ.
2) Christ was his master. He was an ambassador for Christ. His life was about representing and reflecting Christ.
3) We are not apostles in the same sense as Paul, but we are to be ambassadors for Christ. He sent us into the world with a message of salvation.
(Mark 16:15) “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”
4) If we fail to tell the lost about Christ, they are left with no hope.
(2 Corinthians 4:3) “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:”
b. The Message
1) The faith of God’s elect. This phrase describes the Christian faith. Sometimes the word “faith” is acting on trusted information. Other times, as we find here, the word “faith” describes that which biblical Christians believe. It describes Christianity’s fundamental or essential doctrines. A person who rejects these cannot be saved.
a) The Bible is the Word of God.
b) Jesus Christ is God.
c) Jesus bled and died for our sins.
d) Jesus rose bodily from the grave.
e) Only repentance and faith in Christ’s atonement can save us from eternal judgment in the Lake of Fire.
2) The truth which is after godliness. Christ sent Paul with a message that helps believers recognise the truth that pertains to godliness. This truth is about the Christian conduct. The Christian life is not just about going to heaven. It is also about living in a godly way to honour the Lord. He wanted each one to have a full knowledge of that truth. We will learn more of this in Titus 2:11-12.
3) The hope of eternal life (v.2). Both faith and godliness rest upon the hope (confident expectation) of eternal life. If there is NO hope of eternal life, our faith is useless and godly living is vain. However, God promised before the world began to provide eternal life.
(John 3:16) “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
(Acts 15:18) “Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.”
We are assured of this hope because God cannot lie.
4) The manifestation through preaching (v.3). God planned eternal salvation in eternity past, for he knew that man would sin. Yet, he did not reveal it completely until due time (his own right times).
(Romans 5:6) “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.”
Now Christ is manifesting or revealing the hope of the Gospel through preaching.
(1 Corinthians 1:21) “For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”
As Christians, Christ has sent us as his ambassadors to preach his message: the faith, the truth, and the hope. It is our duty to share the gospel. It is not our job to convict the lost. It is our job to warn the lost. Anybody can put tracts in letterboxes. If you pray and depend on God you can hand out tracts to people you meet.
3. The Salutation
a. The addressee
1) Paul addressed his letter to Titus. Titus was one of Paul’s Greek converts after the common faith (they shared the same faith in Christ). When he calls him his “own” son, the word means legitimate or true.
2) His name is mentioned 12 times in Scripture. In his letters to the Corinthian church, Paul called him his brother, partner, and fellowhelper.
b. The prayer
1) Paul prayed that give Titus His grace (divine help), mercy (kindness), and peace (absence of anxiety, harmony).
2) These are three blessings from God that each of us needs every day.
a) We need God’s divine help to do right and to serve him.
b) We need God’s mercy because we often deserve his chastening.
c) We need God’s peace because life is full of burdens.
Conclusion: Are you the servant God wants you to be? Are you denying self, carrying your cross, and following Christ? Are you spreading the Gospel as a sent one? Are you resting in God’s grace, mercy, and peace? There is much for us to think about and even more for us to do.
Song: So Send I You – 416