As we continue through Titus, we are again confronted with the Biblical principles of what a church in order looks like. We see this continuing theme of the correlation between theology and it’s informing our character and conduct. In short, we see the emphasis of the text as the idea that: Rooted in the gospel, a church in order will live in a manner that demonstrates the power of salvation.
A Church in Order Adheres to Gospel Truth: v.1
Paul begins by making this overarching statement about teaching sound doctrine. This isn’t as formal as we may think it is, as the word “teach” implies speech or utterance. It’s the idea that we are talking about and concerned with gospel truth at work in our lives. This is contrasted with those in Titus 1:16 who profess to know Jesus, but deny Him with their lives. Now Paul is exhorting the church to not only profess this, but to prove it in their lives, which he expands upon in verses 2-10.
A Church in Order Lives in Gospel Power: v.2-10
Here Paul addresses a number of aspects for a host of groups in the church. The specific admonitions to each group is needed because we all live under the curse of sin. Therefore Paul addresses older men and women to lead, teach and train younger men and women in what it looks like to live a life committed to Jesus. He points us toward the reality that as we age, our love for Jesus and for others should be increasing and intensifying. Don’t hear this and think, ‘when I get older, I’ll try harder at this.’ These exhortations are meant to function as something we aspire to because of the work of Jesus in our lives. This becomes the evidence that the gospel truly is at work in me. In contrast to those who pay lip service to their love for Jesus, but you can’t see it in their life, the church living in gospel power is a clear manifestation of God’s work within us.
A Church in Order is Motivated by God’s Gospel Work: v.11-14
The motivation for living in this particular way is tied to the gospel work that has been accomplished on our behalf. When we consider all that God has done, according to these verses, it moves us in a few distinct ways. It leads us first to salvation. God’s grace brings salvation. It’s crucial for us to remember from where we have come. Secondly, it gives us training to renounce ungodliness as well as live self-controlled. We don’t have to live in slavery to sin. Freedom is available for those that are committed to Jesus. Finally, it brings hope in our waiting. As we await eternity with Christ, God’s gospel work brings hope in our waiting.
Let us be people, who because of the grace of God, are motivated to live in a manner that demonstrates the power of salvation.