Summary: Paul told the Corinthian church that their lives were letters read by all men. The world is reading us today. What they read will either draw them to or drive them from Christ.
Looking Good - Being an Attractive Christian Titus 2:1-10
Paul told the Corinthian church that their lives were letters read by all men. The world is reading us today. What they read will either draw them to or drive them from Christ. If our lifestyle fails to reflect the character of God, then we neutralize our testimony. Paul writing to Titus gives advice on how each segment of the church – the senior men, the senior women, the younger men, the younger women, the church leadership, and the believer in the world, can become attractive and adorn or beautify the Gospel we preach.
I. Advice to the Older Men – Verse 2 - Aged - historically “presbutes” was a term used to refer to people over 50
A. Sober - moderate...not indulgent...not extravagant. Sobriety is a word that basically means with moderation.
• The mature Christian man is a man who isn't in to excess, who is generally a moderate person.
• Free from all forms of excess or life-dominating patterns
• Remember the influence you have on others. “What one generation accepts in moderation, the next will accept in excess."
B. Grave – does not mean being a gloomy Gus. It come from a word that means serious, when used of people, this term, the Greek semnos, means “worthy of respect, honorable, noble, dignified.” Hiebert describes it as “revealing a personal dignity and seriousness of purpose that invite honor and respect.”
• Christian dignity means to live a holy life, to live according to Biblical teaching, obey to God’s commandments, to live with the sense of seriousness that we are ambassadors on a mission for our Master.
• It does not mean we cannot have fun and enjoy life. But wew must have our priorities right.
• A mature Christian man is not frivolous. He’s not flippant. He is serious about being a Christian 24/7 and demonstrating it in His life.
C. Temperate – discreet, sensible, not impulsive
• The word used for temperate means “of sound mind, sane, sensible, thoughtful,” or “self-controlled, sober-minded.”
• Proverbs 16:32"He that rules his spirit is greater than he that takes a city"
• One of the most tragic sights in life is a man who has learned nothing from the years (Barclay, p. 283).
D. Sound in Faith – Sound – a strong, healthy unwavering faith
• A mature Christian man has a solid belief and trust (or confidence) in God and in Christ.
• Antithesis - Hebrews 5:12 “For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.”
• A mature faith is a tested faith. A healthy church has older men who are examples of balanced stability in faith & character
E. Sound in charity –
• A mature believer should have, and manifest, a healthy love for others. He should not be bitter or selfish, but love out of principle.
F. Sound in patience. – perseverance,
• The mature Christian is to demonstrate persistence in his holding fast to the truth, even in the midst of many difficulties and much opposition.
• Hebrews 10:23 “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering...”
II. Advice to the Older Women – Verses 3-4 - Women are to be a godly resource in the church
A. Holiness - reverent in their behavior (life-style) – priest-like
• “A woman’s heart should be so hidden in Christ that a man should have to seek Him first to find her.” - copied
• Living in a way that honors God.
• Not false accusers - not malicious gossips - diabolos - The Christian woman is to have victory over sins of the tongue.
• Not given to much wine – Temperate –Not under the restraint of wine Drunkenness was a big problem on Crete during this period; that's why it's mentioned so prominently in this letter.
B. Teachers of good things
• There are many young women who need the example and godly wisdom of the senior women in the church.
• Older Christian women need to be mentoring younger Christian women.
III. Advice to the Younger Women - verses 4-5
A. Christian wives are to love their husbands – devoted to their husbands
B. They are to love their children – devoted to the care and nurture of their children
C. “The Christian wife who sets an example of love sends a powerful message that is understandable even to those outside the church.”
D. A tomb inscription of the time of the Emperor Hadrian (3rd Cent.) read, "Julius Bassus to Otacilia Polla, his sweetest wife. Loving her husband (philandros) and loving her children (philoteknos), she lived with him unblameably for 30 years."