Memphis Belle

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Titus 1:1-16 Titus 2:1-15 Titus 3:1-15
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Titus 2:1-15

 

“But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:  that the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.  The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; that they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.  Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded.  In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works:  in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.  Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.  For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.  These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority.  Let no man despise thee.”

 

“You know, keep praying about the air conditioning [chuckles], we’re working on it.  In fact, some parts have been ordered for that big machine, and the compressor is not working properly, it cools a little bit, but parts have been ordered and now we’re just praying by the grace of God they get here soon, because we have folks to rebuild the compressor.  So keep that in your prayers.  Hopefully by next week it’ll be even cooler in here, but we left the ac running all day yesterday and today, to do the best we can with what we got.  But if it gets too hot, we’ll put some more fans on, we’ll do what it takes.  But we appreciate your grace. And also our chairs should be here this Wednesday, so we’ll have a few more seats for next week.  Thought we’d have them this week, we’ll have them next week.  And as the room continues to fill we’ll be going to multiple services not long from now.  So, thanks again for your patience.  [This CC was going through another major growth cycle.]  Let’s say a word of prayer, I’d like to pray too for Don, he’s not been here with us, he won’t be here with us next week either, but he’s down in the western part of the state teaching, and Don you know, he’s part of the worship ministry, but he’s really a pastor at heart, was a pastor for nine years.  And I just find it interesting, for the next few weeks he’s going to be in Springfield to minister at a church that’s been just struggling.  They’ve gone through some hard times, and the couple that is there, the pastor and his wife, they’ve ministered to my wife and I during some tough seasons here.  But they are going through some tough seasons and some difficult times, as churches do, but the Lord has Don down there for a few weeks, just encouraging these folks.  And let’s just say a prayer as their services are about to begin also, and we’ll pray for our time here.  ‘Well Lord we realize that today, around the world there’s your Church gathering to seek you Lord and to hear from you.  And I do pray you bless the many, many services Lord where your people gather, as we always do Lord.  But we pray too for this Calvary Chapel in western part of the state, as Don is there, and I pray you just anoint him this morning, with just the power of the Holy Spirit, to love these people.  And I pray as your Word goes out there that it would encourage their hearts to continue to persevere, for there’s no better thing to do than to seek you and love you, and honor you, and to preach the Gospel.  Certainly the hour is dark.  So we pray you’d just rejuvenate and bless this body down in Springfield.  But Lord we thank you for this hour we have here in northern New England, and oh Lord we ask you again, by the power of the Holy Spirit that you’d speak to every one of us, and move our hearts closer to you Lord.  And we thank you in Jesus name, amen.’

 

The Example Of Good Works

 

There exists in a British museum a Greek writing tablet that predates the Christian era.  And what’s interesting about this writing tablet, it’s basically the equivalent of a child’s copybook, you know, where the master and the scholar, the master writes the phrase and the scholar tries to copy it.  I do it with my son, [his son is grown up now, how time flies!] as the scholar I didn’t do very well in penmanship, but I do better than my 3-year-old son.  So I sit down and try to teach him and he tries to copy my little letters, and in fact in some cases he does as well as I do.  But in this British museum there’s this Greek writing tablet, it’s similar to that.  And the headline of this writing tablet, the master has clearly penned his line, and then you see on the next line the scholar has tried to copy that pattern as best as he can.  But what’s interesting about this tablet is that on the repeating lines, the scholar chose not to reproduce the master’s line, but the previous line, his last line.  So as you go down line by line by line, they diverge further and further from the original.  And that’s an interesting picture for us, isn’t it?  The apostle John writes in his first letter, chapter 2, verse 6, he says, “he who says he abides in him, ought himself to walk just as he walked.”  That he [ie Jesus] is our pattern that we’re to copy.  We’re to live ultimately like him.  Although we know, we look at one another, and we see the pattern in each other’s lives, and we influence one another.  But ultimately, I’m to walk like Christ.  So what sort of example are you?  What sort of pattern do you give to others to follow?  Folks often are following you and I as Christians, watching us.  And what sort of pattern are we?  Is our pattern consistent to the life and walk of Christ?  Or are we displaying a pattern that diverges from that pattern, and therefore when people are following us they’re diverging even further from the life and pattern of Christ.  Is our life consistent with his example?  Last week we began a Bible study, a three-part Bible study about good works, being instruments of good works, it was a three-part study.  Last week we talked about the character of these instruments of good works, their person.  This week we’re going to focus on their pattern, their example.  Six times in this short letter Paul uses the phrase “good works.”  Six times he says “good works”, “good deeds,” or “to do good.”  He says that thought.  So that’s the theme that’s carried through this letter.  Last week again we looked at the character.  Paul said to the Ephesians, he says, ‘For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.’  We’re created for good works, with a purpose of being an instrument of good works.  So again, you’ll remember last week we looked at the character, and how vital our character is.  You know, a hindrance, a slight embellishment [think he means “blemish”] in our character, it’s like the flies in the grease that stopped the train, as Charles Spurgeon talked about last week.  But our character, just the divergence from the character of Christ causes us to be a hindrance, rather than to be an encouragement of the Gospel of Christ.  Well this week as we look “the pattern” that really stems from the character, it’s an outflow of the character.  Generally good character means a good pattern, a good example to follow.  Or a bad character will mean a bad pattern to follow.  Well this week as we look at the pattern, we’re going to look at mainly six areas of instruments of good works, their pattern, their example, we’re mainly going to look at six areas.  The first areas will be a pattern in the Word.  If you’re going to be an instrument of good works, you need to be a good pattern in the Word.  Then we’ll look at a pattern in maturity, as Paul speaks to the older folks in the Church.  A pattern in the home.  A pattern before the world.  A pattern in the workplace.  And the pattern of Christ, the ultimate pattern.  So we’re going to look at six different patterns as we look at the pattern, the example of somebody whose an instrument of Christ.  And obviously this stems from our study last week, as we talked about their character. 

 

1. The Pattern Of The Word:  You Need To Be A Good Pattern Of The Word Of God

 

Let’s begin in verse 1, Paul says these words, they’re really powerful words, he said them before, he says, “But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine:”  ‘But as for you, but as for you Titus,’  Last week, you remember, he talked about these men, these horrible men [the Judaizers], that lived such abominable lives, such filthy lives, defiled in their minds, defiled in their hearts, defiled in their character.  He says that in the very end of chapter 1, Paul said last week, he says ‘that they were disqualified from every good work.’  Their character was so corrupted and defiled that they couldn’t even do one right thing.  So Paul reminds Titus of that, reminds us of that.  He says these folks, that they profess to know Christ, but by their very nature, their very works, they deny him, they hindered the cause of Christ, but he said especially by their teaching.  But he says ‘As for you Titus, you’re to be different.’  As he said to Timothy, ‘But as for you, Timothy, you’re to be different, here’s their example, but you’re not to live like that. And this was their standard of teaching, their style of teaching, their doctrine in teaching, but your doctrine is to be very different, your teaching is to be very different than theirs.  But as for you Titus, they taught with the purpose of financial gain, but you’re to teach,’ he says as you see there, ‘sound doctrine, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine.’  And that word “sound” is an interesting word in the Greek.  The Greek word “sound” there, for “sound” translates “a participle form of the verb hugiano [Strongs # 5198; fr. 5199; to have sound health, i.e. be well (in body); fig. to be uncorrupt (true in doctrine:--be in health, (be safe and) sound, (be) whole(-some).] which is where we get our work hygiene.  It speaks of health, wholeness.  That’s what that word “sound” speaks of, it’s almost a medical term, speaking of health and wholeness.  And the cognitive adjective form of that verb is used in the Gospels in different cases where folks have been healed, they had some sort of physical difficulty or defect, and then they were healed, and that word is used to describe their healing, their wholeness, their soundness.  It’s an interesting picture, like the man with the withered hand.  You remember the man with the withered hand before the religious leaders, and obviously they were trying to trap Jesus, and wondering on the Sabbath whether or not Jesus would heal this man with a withered hand.  But Jesus said ‘Hey, forget them, they’re just legalists, they missed the whole point and spirit of the Law,’ and he heals this man, and it says that his hand “was made whole,” it was made like the other hand, “it was sound.”  [To read an article that deals with Jesus’ correction of the wrong Pharisaic way the Sabbath was being kept and administered by the Pharisees and scribes, Doctors of the Law, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/wwcofg/Has%20the%20Sabbath%20Been%20Abrogated.htm]  So Paul says to Titus, he says ‘there’s these other men, they’re abominable, and their teaching is just deplorable,’ but he says ‘As for you, Titus, your teaching should be different, it should be sound, like a sound body that’s whole, fit together just right, fit together in a very healthy fashion, everything working and functioning properly.’  He says, ‘Your doctrine should be just like that.’  There shouldn’t be some things about it that are dysfunctional, that are therefore going to effect people in a negative way.  He says your teaching should be “sound”, the body and just the whole dynamic of your teaching should be very healthy and whole.  You know, as I was thinking about that, healthy doctrine, healthy doctrine like a healthy body, healthy doctrine does produce a healthy body, and produce a healthy church.  You see it happening in Calvary Chapel’s and other churches where people are just simply teaching the Word, supernaturally it has an effect upon people, begins to make them whole, begins to take the spiritual witheredness and the defects and begins to just change them, just the simple teaching of the Word, and makes them whole.  [i.e. families start to function properly, marriages start to function properly, just to name one area of life.]  You know, I tend to be a day-dreamer, and I was day-dreaming when I was driving home, it wasn’t a good day-dream, was one of those negative day-dreams, I tend to do it a lot.  But somebody was telling me about the Peter Jennings special that was on the television recently, and talking about that, it ripped me off.  And I didn’t see it, but you know, there seems to be more and more shows like that, where they try to discredit historical Christianity.  And of course they go and interview “just the right people,” folks that have a very narrow perspective and very narrow purpose, and therefore they interpret things in a certain manner.  Looking at the same data I would look at, I would say “Man, that just backs up the Bible,” and they say ‘Well, that just discredits the Bible.’  They have that certain perspective. So they interview those people, don’t they, discredit our Christianity.  Of course, you and I, just rips us off, like ‘Come on, get with the program, man.  That’s not what that means, that’s not what he taught.’  And especially when you talk about our Lord Jesus Christ.  And I guess this program is really disturbing, so I was thinking about that, and thinking about historical Christianity, in my little day-dream I’m debating Peter Jennings before thousands, you know, as you do, you probably do the same thing.  [chuckles, laughter]  Of course, being a great scholar, I’m just making him look bad [laughter], you know.  But then I was thinking about it, it is difficult in the year 2000 to debate history 2000 years ago.  Because we’re so far removed.  And to me all the data today says, man, the Bible’s right on.  [see http://www.unityinchrist.com/ProofOfTheBible-FulfilledProphecy.htm]  But it is difficult to debate someone who wants to have that bent, it’s difficult to debate them historically, because we’re so far removed from that time.  But I was thinking about it, you know, even without that, even if I couldn’t convince Peter Jennings, if he would just come to this church, or any church that teaches the Word with an open mind, and watch the result of simple Bible teaching, it would have an influence on his perspective.  Because the Word goes out.  And we try to teach sound doctrine, and it goes out, and begins to make people whole, heals marriages, sets people right, gets people up and going, there’s something about the Word of God.  And for that very reason, even though the so-called experts try to discredit my Christianity, even for that very reason, I would leave all and seek with all my energies to proclaim the Gospel.  Because I see the result of what they teach, it’s not good, man.  It’s not good, man.  It hurts lives.  But this message, sound doctrine, man, begins to put people back together again, and give them the full life, the good life.  Paul says ‘Titus, but as for you, don’t be like these folks that teach this other stuff.  Teach the good stuff, man.  Know it, and learn it, and study it.’  Therefore you and I, we need to be just experts in the Word of God, seeking to know it more and more, because it is amazing what it does.  Paul encourages Titus to be an instrument of good works, especially in his pattern of the Word. 

 

2. We’re To Be A Pattern Of Maturity

 

Secondly, we’re going to look now, we looked at the pattern in the Word, now we’re going to look at the pattern in maturity.  He says in verse 2, teach these things, “that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience;” he says teach the older folk, the older men to be examples before the church, of maturity, of spiritual and Christian maturity, teach them to be examples of this.  He says that they should be sober.  When it says “sober”, generally you think “sober” in the Bible is sober-minded, but here it does have a connection with alcohol, being sober.  It’s a sober-mindedness, it’s a temperance, it’s a self-restraint, but it does have a connection, if you look at the Greek, with alcohol also.  That they would be restrained in alcohol.  You know, we continue to see that, and I was thinking about that.  I don’t try to continue to talk about alcohol lately, but it seems we continue to come to the verses that are.  Man, I’m wondering, ‘Somebody needs to hear this,’ because it keeps coming up.  The Holy Spirit says just to be sober, man, be sober even from alcohol, be sober even in restraining from that.  And you can by the power of God, you can by the power of God.  And he says ‘older men, be an example of that, to others.’  He says, ‘be reverent,’ that’s dignified, that’s that self-composure, you know, of somebody that’s just mature and has walked with the Lord, and lived closely to the Lord, and they’re dignified.  They’re not bitter, they’re not undisciplined because they’ve lived just a selfish life, but they’re very dignified and composed, he says ‘live that before the Body, be a great example.’  What a great encouragement for all of us.  He says, ‘be temperate,’ be sober, be temperate, very similar, but a temperance is that attitude of mind, and attitude of mind that leads to prudence.  You know, these folks on the TV have knowledge, but they don’t know how to apply the knowledge.  That’s their problem, they don’t have wisdom.  But he says to have the type of mind that, it’s a wise mind that knows how to handle the knowledge practically and what to do with it and how to apply it.  And to have an attitude of mind that leads to self-control in your life.  That’s what he says.  Be a pattern in that type of maturity and temperance.  It’s the opposite of frivolity, or a carelessness, a lack of seriousness based on ignorance.  He says ‘be temperate,’ serious and disciplined, wise in your mental thinking and that you know how to take the knowledge and how to use it and how to apply it.  And then he says to be ‘sound in faith,’ to be sound ‘in love,’ to be ‘sound in patience…’  To be sound and firm in these things.  To  be sound in faith is to be sound in the Word, you know, faith comes by hearing, therefore to be sound in doctrine.  That truth is repeated in this chapter and throughout this letter, he says ‘to be sound in faith,’ and from that is going to come the soundness in the Word, and in the love and the patience.  Be strong in these graces.  You know, an older man in the Lord should be a man that’s patient.  He shouldn’t be short with you.  You know, you’re working at McDonald’s, you know, and here he comes from this church, and he pulls up, and he just gives you a hard time, because you messed up the order, you didn’t do it quick enough, he shouldn’t be like that, he should be very patient.  And that’s great when you have godly men around you, that are just very patient.  It tells some of us younger guys to chill out, you know J, ‘Come on, it’s gonna work out, don’t get so worried about it.’  But to be sound and steadfast in faith and in love, especially, always being the example of just a man of love.  He says ‘Older men, be a pattern for the younger men and the younger women to follow.’  You know, you may think as you get older you get less useful, that’s often the perspective in our society, you know, eventually you’re no use to society.  But that’s not what the Bible teaches.  In fact, as you get older in the Lord, you get more useful.  As you’re more mature in his grace and his goodness, man, you’re a powerful weapon in the Church, and I pray the Lord just fills this church with older men, that are just sound in the faith, man, to show us that dignified, composed, example of walking with the Lord.  That’s one of the greatest works we can do is being that type of example.  He says, ‘be a pattern, a pattern of maturity before the rest of the church.’

 

3. The Pattern In The Home: Older Woman To Be Teachers Of The Younger Women

 

Teach The Older Woman To Be Reverent

 

Thirdly, we’ve seen the pattern in the Word, the pattern in maturity, and now we’re going to look at the pattern in the home.  He says to the older women, “the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things---” (verse 3) there we go again, maybe you didn’t hear it last time [i.e. not given to much wine] “teachers of good things---that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.” (verses 4-5)  He says, ‘teach the older women to be this sort of example, to be reverent in behavior,’ again that reverence.  You know that reverence, somebody said, and I thought it was a nice way to say it, comes as there is an awareness continually of the presence of God.  As you are aware of the presence of God, you’re reverent, you have a reverent attitude about you, because you know that the Lord is with you.  And obviously, women of prayer then become women that are reverent.  Because if you’re a woman of prayer, you’re continually practicing being in the presence of the Lord.  So as you grow as a woman of prayer you grow as a woman that is reverent.  And he says ‘teach them,’ older women, as you learn that, you’ve been on your knees for a long time, and you’ve grown, just knowing and aware of the presence of God, now teach the younger women to be reverent, always sensing and knowing that the Lord is near. 

 

Teach The Women Not To Be Slanderers, Gossips

 

He says ‘teach them not to be slanderers,’ [King James Version has that as “not false accusers,”] knowing that the Lord is near.  He says ‘teach them not to be slanderers,’ he says that a lot, ‘don’t be gossips, don’t be slanderers,’  You know, interestingly, the Greek word for “slanderers” here is “devils.”  Now that should be a warning to you.  He says ‘don’t be a devil,’ that’s what he says, ‘don’t be a false accuser,’ Satan is the father of all lies.  So as Christians, man, we shouldn’t be slandering anybody.  Because when we do that, we’re just doing the work of the devil.  So he says, as he says many times to the women, he says ‘Don’t be given to gossip, don’t be given to slandering, because if you do, if you’re a gossip, you’re just doing the enemy’s work.’ 

 

Teach The Women Not To Be Given To Much Wine

 

And he says ‘don’t be given to much wine,’  You know, in that day alcoholism was common with the women, because the women were really repressed in that day.  They were told to just stay in the home, not to leave the home, they were not given any rights, very little love, they were basically slaves for men, and for many of them they got very depressed, and they turned to the bottle. [We have seen the same thing occurring in the Soviet Union, alcoholism ran rampant with most Russians, because the Soviet system was very repressive, even more than it had been under the czars, which had been repressive too.  Heavy alcohol use in Russia has been a sign of their constant repression from the time of the czars through their Communist era, same reason, where there is repression, no hope, many people turn to alcohol and drugs.]  So there was a lot of alcoholism.  So he says to the older women, he says, ‘teach the younger women not to be alcoholics, to be restrained in that area.’  You know, we’ve had, God has moved us to this neighborhood where we continue to minister to some people that are struggling now, as some of the folks that even come by, we have the privilege of ministering to even guys that are living on the streets, and they’re living on the streets because of alcohol or because of drugs.  And I was talking to this one man this past week with another guy from the church, and it was really sad, because this man is older, in his 50s, been an alcoholic for many years, you can tell, and he’s been living on the streets for a long time, and just struggling.  And as he was sharing, he says, “You know, I’m not a bad person,” he wanted to listen to us, he said, “I’m not a bad person, I try to treat people fairly,” he says “I’m only an alcoholic because of my parents,” and he says, “Today, my mom tries to tell me to stop drinking, but when I was young and lived at home, she was sipping her wine and having her parties, and of course being young, I was fallowing right behind.”  And evidently his mom has gotten away from that.  But she did it long enough, and made such an example, such a pattern for her son to follow, that he’s in bondage to it to this day, living on the riverbeds and in the forests, in the trees around here, just completely in bondage.  So our example, he says ‘teach the younger women to be reverent, not to be slandering, and not to be given to much wine,’ be a pattern of restraint and of discipline. 

 

Teach The Older Women To Teach The Younger Women

 

He says ‘teach the older women to be teachers of good things,’ the Bible does say that women who are gifted in teaching are especially valuable to others, but especially the younger women.  Paul doesn’t say in this letter, and this is interesting, he doesn’t say ‘Titus, go teach the younger women,’ he doesn’t say that.  He says ‘Titus, teach the older women to teach the younger women,’ and that’s a great guard, a great rule for the Church to abide by, ‘teach the older women, encourage them to be teachers of good things to the younger women, good things, beautiful things.’  And what are these beautiful things?  What are these wondrous truths?  He says ‘Admonish the younger women, train the younger women,’ and that Greek says ‘to make them sane, bring them to their senses, teach them to be sober-minded.’  Place within the younger ladies a heart and a mind to do the right thing, to have a spiritual right perspective and a right mental attitude.  He says, ‘train them in such a manner, teach the older women to train the younger women in that manner,’ and he says, ‘first of all to love their husbands.’  And man, that is so neat today in our society, we see that over and over again, but teach them to love their husbands, to give to them, to serve them, to love them in practice, day by day, to serve them as they would serve the Lord.  [I’m sort of seeing a pattern develop here in Paul’s teaching to Timothy and Titus, instructing them to teach the older women to reach down and teach the younger women, a sort of economy of force here.  Why?  Because a pastor could waste a lot of time trying to reach all the young women, who might not pay all the much attention to him, and he’d be real busy trying to do so.  It’s also a protection to the pastor, not to have to be going to all the younger women to teach them.  And the older women are respected by the younger women.  By teaching the older folk in each group, you cover all your bases as a pastor, economy and effectiveness of your time spent trying to teach and reach everyone under you.  Older women make excellent Sunday and Sabbath-school teachers, and excellent teachers of younger women.  Older men are excellent for reaching the younger men, what they say to younger men carries much more weight.  In each case, whether it’s the older men, or older women, each group has or should have developed far more wisdom in life, have far more to impart to the younger generation in their congregations.  Although Paul does go on here to tell Titus to also have the pastors teach the young men directly too.]  You know, yesterday we had a wedding here, and often in Christian weddings you’ll have Communion, I like it when they do that and I can be part of it, because Communion is a great thing to do in a wedding ceremony, because Communion is that picture, that emblem of supreme love.  And that’s what marriage is all about, man.  You know, Christ, Ephesians chapter 5, Paul said ‘this is it, man, Christ, the way he lived, he died on the cross, that’s the picture for marriage,’ so it’s great to do Communion in the middle of a marriage ceremony, and to be able to share with all the people the supreme love of Christ, this love that Christ has for us.  And then I usually will exhort the husband to lay his life down for the wife.  And I’ll say to the wife, you know, serve your husband as Christ served the Father, and just submitted to the Father, and loved him in that way.  So, Paul says, ‘exhort and encourage older women to learn, and with all that they’ve learned then now to teach and discipline and encourage the younger women to love their husbands,’ and then he says, ‘to love their children,’ ah, man, that’s so needed.  So many kids are lacking in love, he says teach the moms to just love them and to hug them, and to make them a priority, to make the kids a priority.  They need to know they are a priority, teach them that the kids are a blessing, and that they should be a priority, and the training of the children should be a priority to the moms.  I’ve been reading Hudson Taylor’s biography, I love to read biographies.  I start to go to other books and go ‘Ah, boring,’ go find another biography, I just love to read biographies of the men of the past.  I’m reading Hudson Taylor, and I thought it was pretty neat, he talks about his conversion, but the interesting thing about his conversion, he was 15 years of age, mom was away for certain reasons, and he’s got some time on his hands, his vacation, and he’s in dad’s library, thinking ‘Well, if I can find a book to read, I’ve got to do something here today, no one’s around, I’m bored.’  And this Gospel tract caught his eye, he admits, this Gospel tract got his eye, ‘I know what it’s about, but I don’t want to read it.’  But sometimes they have interesting little illustrations and stories.  ‘So I’ll go sit down and read some of these interesting little stories, and I’ll ignore the spiritual stuff at the end, I don’t want to read the sermon at the end.’  Well he sat down determined to do that.  But he didn’t realize at that very moment, 80 miles away, a little earlier his mom, at the dinner table, and just had a burden for her son’s salvation, so she got up from the table, she went into her room, locked the door, got on her knees, she says ‘I’m not leaving this room until my son comes to Christ,’ and began to cry out to God with that kind of determination, and went into prayer for hours for her son.  And then the Holy Spirit just revealed to her that her son was going to come to Christ.  So she began to rejoice and praise the Lord.  At the same time, her son is flipping through this tract, and as he’s reading this tract, the phrase “the finished work of Christ” caught his eye.  He’s like ‘What does that mean?’  And then the Holy Spirit just began to reveal to him that beautiful truth.  And then he humbled himself, received Christ as his Lord and Saviour right there in a shed as he went to, to read this tract.  And then he began to praise the Lord, and as he was praising the Lord for his salvation, his mom 80 miles away was praising the Lord, that her son was going to come to Christ.  She came home a few days later, and the two put the two stories together.  She came home confident that her son was going to be a Christian. 

 

Older Women, Teach The Younger Women To Love Their  Husbands And Children

 

So he says, ‘older women, teach the younger women to love their children.’  And one way you can love them is really pray for them.  Prayer is so powerful.  Hudson Taylor’s life was, as he learned that, he had a perspective from that point on, that prayer is powerful.  So therefore he began to even test prayer, he’d set up examples, ‘Lord, I’m not going to tell my employer to pay me, I’m going to pray that he remembers,’ and you know employers usually don’t remember to pay you, especially in his day and age where it was just now and then, so he said ‘I’m not gonna tell him,’ his bank account was empty, he said ‘I just want to test this prayer thing, “Lord, tell my employer to remember to pay me, just tell him it’s time, I’m out of money."  And he’d give the stories how at the last hour, it’d be like midnight, and his employer would suddenly get the idea, you know, ‘Hey,’ and Hudson Taylor’s just about ready to starve, you know, but he’d come over and he’d pay him.  Different things that he’d do, because he believed prayer was powerful because of the example of his mom.  I’ve read this before, but the recipe for child-raising, a good recipe is this, you might want to write it down if you’re a mom:  1 cup of Proverbs 22:6, put that in a pan, bake it up, two tablespoons of Proverbs 19, verse 13, one dash of Proverbs 23,  verse 13, one teaspoon of Proverbs chapter 3, verse 5, one half cup of Titus chapter 2, verse 3 through 7.  Mix all the ingredients, add a pound of persistence, one cup of love, whip it until right consistency.  This recipe is recommended by the Creator of mankind.  Please add a pinch of Ephesians 6:4.  There’s a great recipe for a mom.  ‘Older women, teach younger women, you moms follow that example.’  You know, younger moms struggle too, you got the little bambinos at home, and you’re just learning this thing, it’s tough man.  So the older moms go and exhort them and teach them. 

 

Older Women, Teach The Younger Women To Be Discreet, Chaste, Home-makers

 

It says ‘teach them also to be discreet,’ to be discreet, that’s a temperance again, a prudence, a type of mental attitude that is important to the Holy Spirit, the way we think, to think properly.  If you think properly, your outlook will determine your outcome.  It’s not the power of positive thinking, but it is true as Christians, if we have the proper mindset it really has an effect on the way we live.  If you’re not thinking properly, you will not act properly.  But to think properly, is to be disciplined in mind.  If we’re not disciplined as parents, how can we discipline our children.  So this is a thing of discipline, he says ‘teach the younger moms to be disciplined, to teach them to be chaste,’ ah man, we need to teach them to be chaste, to be pure, not to dress like the world, and not to have that perspective of sexual immorality, but to be pure.  There’s this wonder and power in purity, there’s value in purity, it says teach them to live a pure life.  ‘teach them to be homemakers,’ it’s a blessing to keep the home in order.  And I’m thankful that God has given me a wife that wants to be a homemaker, she’s a gifted school-teacher, gifted in many ways, but man she seeks to be a homemaker.  And she sees that she has the privilege, she says this, “I have the privilege of ministering to the pastor.”  So she tries to.  And it’s amazing the things that she does for me, just thinking of me all the time, saying, ‘You know, hey, he probably didn’t make lunch, too busy, so I better go bring him lunch,” she just does that, and looks out for me.  And when she’s gone, and she was for a week, I tell you, I struggled.  [laughter]  I know some of you were bringing meals, thank you [laughter].  And I noticed, because she called you, too [what a woman, lucky man, Steve].  But you know, she just puts my life in order.  And it’s a powerful thing to be a homemaker.  If there’s moms really seeking to put their homes in order, it effects the Church, it effects the culture, it effects the society.  It’s so powerful to be disciplined, I mean, what does your home say about your homemaking?  Do you see it as a priority?  It’s a blessing.  It’s not to say you shouldn’t have a job.  But take your homemaking as a very…[tape switchover, some text lost]…be kind people, and especially as they get older they shouldn’t be, you know, knaggy and you know, just a nasty old lady, she should be kind, as you go from younger years and just grow to be just kind and good, no cranky ladies, he says, then to be obedient to their husbands.  Heavy statements, but you know if there’s love in the home, there’s no problem with obedience, especially when you look at the Communion table, when the desire is to glorify God, it’s easy to do anything that God asks you to do.  Any difficulty can be worked out.  He says ‘exhort them to do this that the Word of God be not blasphemed.’  And I tell you, one of the most powerful ministries we have in this day and age is our home.  If we are examples, I tell you it doesn’t matter what kind of TV show they put on to discredit historical Christianity, if your neighbor sees a strong home, it doesn’t matter what he’s watching on TV, he’s like ‘What is going on with those people?  I need that over here.  My kids are out of control, my wife and I are always fighting, but those people, man, they’re just having a good time, and there’s such peace over there.’  Regardless of what Peter Jennings says on TV, it’s not going to matter as they watch your home next door.  So he says, man, the pattern in the home is so powerful.  If you want to be an instrument of a good work, be a pattern of Christ in your home.  He says, that the Word of God would not be blasphemed.  So, if it’s being blasphemed because of our homes, or if you’re nervous because somebody in the church is moving in next door or upstairs, you’re like ‘Uh-oh, what are we gonna do?’  Well, the pattern in the home.

 

4. Be A Christlike Pattern Before The World---It May Be The Only Bible Some Will Ever Read In This Age Of Man

 

Verses 6-8, “Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded.  In all things [Titus] shewing thyself a pattern of good works:  in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say to you.”  Fortunately we’re going to look at the pattern before the world.  Paul says in verse 6, he says, “Likewise, exhort the young men to be sober-minded.”  That is the only thing he says to young men, exhort them to be sober-minded.  And that’s this powerful word of being a self-master, like the power of the Holy Spirit, having self-mastery.  And I tell you, as young men, that’s what we need, is that sober mind, that type of outlook, that self-mastery of just in every way, you know, you can pray for me that I would become more sober-minded.  You know, you study on a warm day, somebody was saying, and I was encouraged by it, but that pastors, it’s like you enroll in a college class that never ends.  That’s what it’s like, you study every week.  And I didn’t really like studying when I was younger, you know, I didn’t like the homework in college and all that.  But you know, that’s what pastoring is or any teaching ministry is in the church, you study every single week.  [Tell me about it, look at the prophecy and church history and OT history sections of this site, took years worth of secular and Bible studies to put that together.  I never realized it, but it took years, multiple years, studying, week in, week out.  Hope you enjoy them.]  And if you’re not sober-minded, you know, you’re thinking about the butterfly that went by, or you’re thinking about ‘What can we do about that molding at church, maybe we should paint it grey or blue,’ and your mind is going all over the place.  I need to be more sober-minded.  It effects even my teaching.  He says, ‘Young men, be sober-minded.’  That is something that you and I should desire all the more as the younger men in this church, ah, tremendous pattern of Christ.  Then, he says to Titus, he says ‘teach them this.’  And then he says, ‘You Titus, in all things show yourself to be a pattern of good works, in every way, an example.’ (verse 7a)  That word “pattern” there in the Greek is a word that refers to “a die”, a type of die that impresses itself and leaves the imprint of itself upon something else. And he says ‘that is the type of pattern you should be, a die, that you should be living in such a way that you have a positive impression, you leave a positive impact upon other people’s lives.’  So he says ‘Live that way, in all you do,’ and Paul was able to say that, he says that to the elders in Miletus, he said to the elders in Miletus, he says ‘I’ve taught you and I have shown you, I’ve not held back anything good, but I’ve taught it to you and I’ve shown it to you, I’ve lived it before you.’  So is your life, is your life a pattern, a consistent pattern?  What kind of impression, what kind of impact do you have on the lives of other people?  Do you want to be an instrument of good works?  Or are you a misrepresentation of the pattern of the Master, of Christ?  When people look at you, are they seeing something that’s really blurred and not really knowing what it is?  Or are they seeing Christ?  John Robinson gave this charge in 1620 to the Pilgrims as they were about to board the Mayflower for America, he said this, “I charge you before God, that you follow me no further than you’ve seen me follow the Lord Jesus Christ.  If God reveals anything to you by any other instrument of his, be as ready to receive it as you are to receive any truth by my ministry, for I am verily persuaded that the Lord hath more truth yet to break out of his holy Word.”  He says ‘I’ve shown you the best I can, and only follow me if you see I’m following Christ, but if anybody else is following Christ you can follow that pattern too.’  There’s a lot of depth to the Word, there’s a lot to learn.  [Comment:  For a good history of the Pilgrim Separatists, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/history/saga.htm.  Robinson’s speech is included that history.]  And you know, you’ve heard it said, but you and I are sometimes the only Bible people read.  That they look at us, and that’s what they see.  And what kind of example are they seeing, what kind of pattern are they seeing?  Are we discrediting the Word of God?  Paul says to Titus, he says ‘be an example, show yourself a pattern of good works,’ and then he says ‘especially again in your teaching, in your teaching,’  There’s all sorts of folks on television saying this and that about Christianity, there are all sorts of churches teaching this and that, he says ‘You, in your teaching, show a pattern of sound doctrine, of integrity,’ that’s incorruptness, that’s a wholeness, that’s a soundness, ‘of reverence,’ if you handle the Word of God, be serious about it, don’t be flippant about it.  ‘of incorruptibility,’ and then ‘of sound speech,’ even the words you use should be wholesome and true, ‘so that no one can condemn you.’  So as you live, and you preach and teach, there aren’t people there, he says in verse 8, that can stand and say ‘You know, you’re out of line, and this is why.’  He says anybody that accuses you, any opponent should be ashamed, because you’ve been such a pattern of good works before them.  They have no place to accuse you of being inconsistent or being a hypocrite.  You know Jesus said about the religious teachers, he says they say one thing and they do another.  He said therefore ignore them.  That’s what he told people, he said these folks, they say one thing, but then they don’t do it, they do a completely different thing, don’t listen to them.  They’re hypocrites, he said.  Well what do our opponents say of us?  Those who are at work, those in our neighborhood, can they say any evil of us?  Can the world say anything evil of us, about the things we say, and about the things we do?  He says be in a pattern before the world of Christ, so that others can follow.  The truth is, like that thing in the British museum, you know, people are following us to one degree or another. And somebody once said, “No man is completely worthless, he can always serve as a horrible example.”  I pray that isn’t any of us, thinking ‘ah, I don’t want to do anything, it doesn’t matter,’  but people are watching, and we’re being pretty lousy examples.  I look back on my early years in Christ, and I just cringe when I think of some of the people that knew me.  I’m like, ‘you know, they haven’t come to Christ yet,’ and I wonder why.  It was because of the way I lived.  So it says be a pattern, this instrument of good works, before the world.

 

5. Be A Pattern Of Christ In The Workplace

 

And then he says ‘a pattern in the workplace,’ same type of thought, verse 9, he says, ‘Exhort bondservants to be obedient to their own masters, to be well pleasing in all things, not answering back, not pilfering, but showing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.” (verses 9-10)  [God our Saviour, again, showing the deity of Jesus Christ!]  He says, ‘Ok, bondservants, slaves, workers,’ he says, ‘be a pattern in the workplace, be obedient to your masters, be obedient to them.’  Be trustworthy, do what they tell you to do, and you do it in love, and use it as an example to be a pattern for Christ, be wellpleasing in all things.  You know, if you go to church with a smile, and you go home and try to smile, but then you go into the workplace, and you’re real hard to work with, and you’re employer is like ‘Here he comes.’  And you know, I hear about people, ‘You know that guy, he’s a Christian, but you know he works in my group, and oh man. I tell you, he really is a discredit to the name of Christ, because he doesn’t work, he talks on the phone all the time,’ or he just takes advantage of his employer, or he doesn’t work hard.  It’s very important that we’re a pattern in the workplace if we’re going to be an instrument of good works.  He says be obedient to your masters, wellpleasing in all things, what a tremendous example, not answering back, you know, you’re easy to entreat.  You know, whenever you administrate anything, you have people with you working under you, or a servant, it’s so cool to know you can go to John and say ‘John, can you help me on this?’ and John goes, ‘Yea, sure thing.’  Rather than have to fight him, or he gets real despondent, like ‘alright, I’ll do it,’  But it’s a joy, when those people are that way, you generally go to them from that point on, because they’re a blessing to work with you.  You know, there’s a story, a very long time ago in Greece the politicians thought to play a joke on one of their numbers, and got him appointed as the public scavenger, like ‘haha, we’ll give him the office of being the scavenger in the community,’ it was a joke.  Well instead of being embarrassed, he decided what a man could do with such a lowly assignment, ‘I’m the scavenger in the community, I’ve been assigned that job,’ so he tried with all his might.  But as a result, years passed.  Unsanitary conditions which had encouraged pestilence for decades were eliminated, habits of cleanliness were promoted, civic pride was stimulated, and in a few years people came to look upon the office of public scavenger as one of honor and responsibility, and therefore only men of great ability could aspire to this post.  They tried to do it as a joke, he said, ‘Alright, I’ll do it with all my might, I’ll be the best scavenger I can be,’ and he had an effect upon his community.  So, Paul says be a pattern in the workplace, it can go a long way.  And you find, if you work hard, you stand before kings, that’s what the proverb says.  It works to good in many ways.  He says be a pattern in the workplace, in these areas, but also not in pilfering, not in embezzling or stealing.  You know, you don’t take the company pencils home, you don’t take the company paper home, you don’t take all that stuff home, it’s Caesar’s you know, you look at it as Caesar’s.  And you don’t use your job to take advantage and say ‘Well, you know, the government, it’s a government skill-saw, I can take it home with me, it’s just the government’s, they’ll never notice.’  Well he says, that shouldn’t be the attitude in any way of a Christian, but a Christian should even honor Caesar while he’s at work.  “but showing all good fidelity,” you know, it’s not the word for stereo, but in faithfulness, be a faithful worker, a trustworthy worker.  And then he says wonderfully, I love this, “that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.”  There you go, be a Bible, is what he says.  Just put the Word of God on in your actions, and let people just read your life, adorn it.  That word in the Greek is the word for arranging jewels in order to display their beauty.  You know, as you do weddings you get the ring of the bride there, and you give it to her in the wedding ceremony, and like I did yesterday, so often there’s the diamond, you know, arranged so beautifully.  And we’re to be like the ring, the setting to just take that beautiful jewel and just to hold it so people can see it.  He says ‘adorn your life, be that sort of pattern.’  Benjamin Franklin wished to interest the people of Philadelphia in street-lighting.  Initially people were like ‘Why do we need street lighting?  What’s the purpose of that?’  Well he didn’t try to persuade them by talking to them any longer, instead he hung up a beautiful lantern on a long bracket before his own door.  Then he kept the brass brightly polished, and carefully and religiously he lit the wick every evening at the approach of dusk.  It wasn’t long before Franklin’s neighbors began placing lights on brackets before their homes, and soon the entire city awoke to the value of street-lighting, and took up the matter with interest and enthusiasm.  He says, ‘I can’t talk them into it, I’ll just show them.  I keep putting that light there on my porch, they’ll start saying, ‘That’s kind of nice, I like that lit up porch look, what a pretty light,’ and he says ‘be like that with the Word of God, just put it on.’   Let people look over and go, ‘You know, I like that, that looks good, I think I’m going to check that out and try that.’ 

 

Sandwiched Between Two Epiphanies

 

Well in conclusion let’s read these last verses here.  You know, we could do about a week’s worth of Bible studies on these last verses.  There are people who have written volumes on this.  It says, “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.  Speak these things, exhort, and rebuke with all authority.  Let no one despise you.” (verses 11-15)  You know, as I get commentaries on the different books of the Bible, I’m thinking ‘Titus, three chapters, this will be nice, I got to find short commentaries here, it takes awhile to read those commentaries, you get John McArthur, he’s got a whole volume on three chapters, I got to look at hundreds of pages just to look at one chapter.’  But there’s so much here even in these verses, ah, there’s people that have made a life-study out of these verses.  Here he refers to the pattern of Christ, again our example, the pattern that we’re to follow, for he says “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,” that word “appeared” is “epiphany,” and it’s used in reference to the appearing of Christ, and in this context you have two epiphanies, you have the first appearing of Christ, and then you have the second appearing of Christ, when he comes back, and then you have this stuff sandwiched inbetween.  And it’s a beautiful picture, but he says ‘so the grace of God has appeared, teaching us, Jesus Christ has come, his grace has come,’ and it’s had an effect upon my life, teaching me to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, I’ve received this grace and his freedom, there’s no better life than to live like Christ.  So therefore I seek to deny those things, and the first appearing, I look back to that, and then I look forward, he says, to the second appearing.  He says to live soberly, that mindset, as Paul said before, living soberly, looking ahead, righteously and godly in the present age.  And then specifically, he says, “looking for the blessed hope and the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,”  There was [words unintelligible], I didn’t bring his statement with me, but he referred to this verse is like being in a home with two windows, one window you look over here, there’s Golgotha, and it’s got that type of glow to it, and over here there’s this bright Sun of the 2nd Coming of Jesus Christ, and then we stand in this home, inbetween these two windows, looking this way, back at this epiphany, and looking ahead to that epiphany.  And may that be our mindset as we go about our day to day duty, sandwiched inbetween these two epiphanies.  When the learned and wealthy John Seldon was dying, he said to the archbishop Usher, “I’ve surveyed most of the learning that is among the sons of men, and my study is filled with books and manuscripts” he had about 8,000 volumes in his library [I’m envious J], but he’s dying, and he’s thinking about these different books he’s got, “but at present I cannot recollect any passage out of all my books and papers whereon I can rest my soul, save this from the sacred Scriptures.”  “The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.”  And he said, ‘that is me, I can rest in that on my deathbed, though I’ve read 8,000 other books.’   He said, in this text, you can do so many Bible studies, but he says this phrase, “Our great God and Savior Jesus Christ” and that is a great verse.  In fact I even looked into the Jehovah Witnesses Greek translation of this, just to see what they did with it, but it’s a great Scripture, proving the Deity of Jesus Christ.  And here’s five reasons, I’ll give them to you real quick, for those of you that like to hear this stuff.  It says “great God and Saviour”, when it says that, it says “God, Saviour, Jesus Christ.”  He’s both, he’s our great God and he’s our Saviour.  In the Greek when nouns are linked together as they are here by one article, there’s only one article here, they designate the same subject.  So when it says “great God” and “Saviour”, there’s only one subject, if you use the Greek rules, the proper Greek rules, it’s Jesus Christ.  Also the majority of ancient Greek fathers understood that this phrase was exactly read this way, “great God and Saviour” meaning “Jesus Christ.”  Thirdly, there’s ten New Testament references to the two epiphanies of Jesus Christ, and nowhere is there any reference to the epiphany of God, it’s always Jesus Christ.  So at first, the epiphany of our great God, the appearing, the blessed hope of his appearing, is Jesus Christ.  Everywhere in the New Testament, when it says appearing, epiphany, it says Jesus Christ.  Fourthly, the context most naturally requires the reference to be Christ, because it goes on and just speaks about his glory, and from his glory it goes to his suffering and his death.  And that term “God and Saviour” was a stereotype formula that in the first century time-period of when this was written, that was a stereotype that was used in all sorts of religions, it was  a common phrase, “God and Saviour”, the Greek used it, the Romans used it, so he’s using a very common and Greek phrase when he says that, referring to one subject, Jesus Christ.  So our appearing of the great God, he came, as a man, and he’s coming back, the infinite God, the omnipotent God, the omniscient God, Jesus Christ.  So we live, looking back when he came as a man, in wonder of his grace and his love for us, and we look in hope because he’s coming back for us, to give us eternal life.  Great passage of Scripture, Paul says here, he says ‘teach these things, just let them hear it, man, that Jesus is God, that he’s come, as a man, and he’s coming back,’  “speak these things, exhort, and rebuke with all authority.  Let no one despise you.”  i.e. when they put the TV specials on, let them know they’re out to lunch when they discredit historical Christianity, because this is truth right here.  “Let no one despise you.”  A pattern, instrument of good works, the pattern, the example, the way we live.  What is our example?  What kind of impression are we making upon other people’s lives, what are they reading when they look upon our life?  What Bible are we before them? “Lives of great men all remind us, we can make our lives sublime, and departing leave behind us footprints on the sands of time, footprints that perhaps sailing o’r life’s solemn mane, if a lone and shipwreck brother seeing, shall take heart again,”  as he sees our footprints, he says, ‘Hey, this guy did it right, what an example, I’m going to follow this example.’  That was written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  Lets close in prayer…[transcript of a connective expository sermon on Titus 2:1-15, given somewhere in New England]    

 

related links:                       

 

The Bible is right on, the actual Word of God.  see,

http://www.unityinchrist.com/ProofOfTheBible-FulfilledProphecy.htm

 

And speaking of good works, that we are created to do good works, here’s a few studies on the importance of them, describing what we can do.  See,

 

http://www.unityinchrist.com/evangelism/samaritan_purse.htm

 

http://www.unityinchrist.com/wwcofg/wearesalt.htm

 

http://www.unityinchrist.com/wwcofg/Questions.htm                     

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