23 Oct. Titus 1:1-14

23 Oct. Paul writes to Titus in Crete

"From Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ...
To Titus, my true child in the faith which we share:
Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Saviour..."

"I left you in Crete so you could finish doing the things that still needed to be done and so you could appoint elders [Greek 'presbyterion' - a body of older men] in every town, as I directed you."

"An elder must not be guilty of doing wrong, must have only one wife, and must have believing children. They must not be known as children who are wild and do not obey."

"As a manager of God's work, an elder [Greek 'episkopos' - an overseer or bishop] must not be guilty of doing wrong, being selfish or becoming angry quickly. He must not drink too much wine, like to fight or try to get rich by cheating others."

"An elder [an overseer or bishop] must be ready to welcome guests, love what is good, be wise, live right and be holy and self-controlled... he can show those who are against the true teaching that they are wrong."

"There are many people who refuse to obey, who talk about worthless things and lead others into the wrong way - mainly those who say all who are not Jews must be circumcised. These people must be stopped, because they are upsetting whole families by teaching things they should not teach, which they do to get rich by cheating people."

"Even one of their own [Cretan] prophets said, "Cretan people are always liars, evil animals and lazy people who do nothing but eat." The words that prophet said are true..."

"So firmly tell those people they are wrong so they may become strong in the faith, not accepting Jewish false stories and the commands of people who reject the truth."

          (Titus 1:1-14)

 

 

Paul wrote this letter to his fellow-worker Titus, who had been left by Paul on the island of Crete (see Titus 1:5). The letter was probably written from Corinth in Achaia (southern Greece) between 63 and 66 AD, shortly after Paul’s First Letter to Timothy (which contains some of the same advice). The letter was taken to Crete by Zenas and Apollos (see Titus 3:13).

Titus was a Greek-speaking Gentile believer who was probably converted by Paul either in Antioch (in Syria) (in 43/44AD) or on his first missionary journey in Pamphylia or Galatia (47/48AD). Paul took Titus with him when he attended the Council of Jerusalem in 49/50AD and asked the leaders in Jerusalem to take the decision not to require non-Jewish believers to be circumcised (see Acts 15:1-21). The leaders agreed with Paul, and didn’t insist that Titus should be circumcised (see Galatians 2:1-4).

Titus later helped Paul at Ephesus during his third missionary journey (53-56AD), and was sent from there to Corinth with Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians (see 2 Corinthians 12:18). After assisting the believers in Corinth, Titus took news of the Corinthian church back to Paul at Philippi (see 2 Corinthians 7:6-7). Titus then took Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians from Philippi to Corinth (see 2 Corinthians 8:16-17).

After Paul’s release from house arrest in Rome in 62AD, Titus travelled with Paul to Crete where Paul left him in charge of the new church. The Church of Agios Titos (St Titus) in Irakleio (Heraklion) commemorates the appointment of Titus to oversee the Cretan church (see the photo).

Later, Paul asked Titus to meet him at Nicopolis (on the western coast of Greece) (see Titus 3:12) and then sent him on a mission to Dalmatia (modern Croatia) (see 2 Timothy 4:10).

In his letter, Paul advises Titus how to choose church leaders. He suggests a method of teaching different groups of people within the church and offers advice on Christian conduct.

He begins by greeting Titus as “my true child in the faith we share” (Titus 1:4). Paul reminds Titus that he was left in Crete to appoint leaders (elders and overseers) of the Christian communities in every town. These leaders should have a good reputation, have only one wife, and their children should also be believers. They must not be arrogant or quick-tempered, and should be hospitable and self-controlled.

Paul then warns Titus that some Jewish believers are upsetting whole families by their false teachings. He reminds Titus that Cretans have always had a bad reputation. Even the Cretan poet Epimenides, writing in the sixth century BC, had called them “liars, evil animals and lazy people who do nothing but eat” (Titus 1:13). So Titus should rebuke their insistence on the truth of Jewish myths.

You can read more from Paul's Letter to Titus @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/pauls-letter-to-titus-in…/


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