Titus’ Twofold Ministry

21 September 2014 PM – Titus 1:5-9 – Tit 14 – Scott Childs

Introduction: The first day on a new job can be rather nerve racking. However, a good employer will clearly explain how to do the job the right way. Paul’s instructions to Titus were somewhat like those of an employer to his new employee. He told him just what needed to be done and how to do it.

Transition: As we look at Titus’ twofold ministry, we will see many qualities that God wants each of us to develop in our own lives.

1.        Titus was to Set in Order Things Left Undone

a.         Paul left some things undone in Crete

1)         Evidently, Paul and Titus worked together to preach the Gospel on the island of Crete after he was released from his first Roman imprisonment.

2)         For an unknown reason, Paul left before all the work was completed and he left Titus to finish the job.

b.         Paul asked Titus to set things in order

1)         The word that Paul used actually means to further sent in order or to further arrange things. The word derived from a word that means “straight” or “not crooked”. It is not that Paul left things in a mess, but the work was not yet complete.

2)         As we read the New Testament, we see clearly that God has planned for local churches to be the spiritual family and spiritual home for Christians.

a)         A church is a called out assembly of believers.

b)         Baptism by immersion and church membership was the expected norm for all Christians, and every new group of believers became a church.

c)         Paul worked to edify the churches he started.

(Acts 16:5) “And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily.”

3)         God wants churches to be organised.

(1 Corinthians 14:40) “Let all things be done decently and in order.”

2.        Titus was to Oversee the Appointment of Elders

a.         Every congregation needed an elder for leadership.

1)         The term elder means “older one” or “mature one”.

2)         It is used in the New Testament to refer to the spiritual leader of a congregation. In 1Ti 3:1, Paul calls this man the bishop (overseer). In Eph 4:11, Paul calls him a pastor-teacher. Here in Titus 1:5 he is called the elder (leader). All three terms describe the same office.

3)         Peter described the work of the elder as that of a pastor or shepherd of a flock.

(1 Peter 5:1-3) “The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.”

4)         Paul told Titus to be sure that every church in every town had an elder or pastor (v.5). Here are a few reasons that I do not believe that Titus by himself appointed these elders.

a)         Being a foreigner, he would not know which men met the qualifications. Only the local congregation would know that.

b)         In Acts 14:23, the word “ordained” means “to vote by stretching out the hand”.

c)         The word used in Titus 1:5 leaves room for Titus to supervise the choosing done by the church.

b.         The elders were to be qualified

1)         Domestic Qualifications

a)         Blameless (not accused of wrong)

b)         The husband of one wife (no polygamy or divorce)

c)         Having faithful children (believing, Christian children)

“He who could not bring his children to faith, how shall he bring others?” (Bengel)

(1)      Not accused of riot (careless spending on lustful appetites)
(2)      Not accused of unruly (insubordination)

God holds parents, especially dads, responsible for both their children’s spiritual upbringing and conduct.

d)         For a bishop must be blameless as the steward of God. Here the elder is called a bishop. A “steward” is a household manager. The bishop must be able to properly manage his own family so that he will be able to properly manage the spiritual family.

2)         Personal Qualifications

a)         Not selfwilled (self-pleasing, proud, stubborn)

b)         Not soon angry (quick-tempered, easily irritated)

c)         Not given to wine (Gk: Paroinos) Remember that people in Bible days drank wine either as unfermented fresh grape juice or slightly fermented and diluted with water. One who was “given to wine” purposely drank undiluted wine.

“The ancient paroinos was a man accustomed to attend drinking-parties.” Thus the Christian minister is required not only to be personally sober, but also to withhold his presence and sanction from those assemblies where alcoholic drinks are used, endangering the sobriety of himself and others.” William Patton http://www.pmiministries.com/BIBLE-WINES_William%20Patton.pdf

d)         No striker (quarrelsome, rather a peacemaker)

e)         Not given to filthy lucre (greedy for money or materialism, preaching just for financial gain)

f)          But a lover of hospitality (hospitable)

g)         A lover of good men (loving good in general)

h)         Sober (of a sound mind, prudent)

i)           Just (righteous, upright in all dealings)

j)           Holy (pious, pure, holy, faithful to God)

k)         Temperate (self-controlled, power to control all his passions)

3)         Doctrinal Qualifications

a)         Holding fast (holding firmly) the faithful word (trustworthy doctrines) as he hath been taught (according to the teaching received from the apostles, hold it firmly without change),

b)         That he may be able by sound doctrine (healthy teaching) both to exhort (call to one’s side to encourage, admonish, beg, comfort, warn; exhort in healthy teaching)

c)         And to convince (refute, convict, correct) the gainsayers (opposers, false teachers, unbelievers).

Conclusion: Titus’ job was to set things in order and to help the churches to choose elders. Every quality that God requires of a spiritual leader is a quality that he wants others to develop. As you read down through this list, mark any quality that is lacking in your life and ask God to help you develop it.

Song: Teach Me Thy Way, O Lord – 337