Summary: To establish that the evangelist or minister is charged with "setting things in order and ordaining elders in every city, in every church." This lesson discusses the qualifications and work of Christ's leadership in the church.
1. The Evangelist's Charge: "Set Things In Order"
2. The Eldership's Charge: "Hold Things in Order"
3. The Evil Teacher's Charge: "Get Things in Order"
1. Paul's work in Crete was incomplete before he had to leave. He empowered the evangelist Titus to remain behind in Crete and "set in order the things that were wanting." Titus was Paul's son in the gospel like Timothy. He would be instrumental to him in this ministry. Crete was an opportunity for Titus to demonstrate his leadership as an evangelist. Paul had great confidence in this young preacher.
2. The evangelist’s work is to "set things in order - things that are found to be wanting." The one thing that was not yet in order was the church's organization, which was to include elders and deacons. He charged him to: "make the best out of a mess." He was to identify, qualify and appoint them to this most solemn work as overseers and managers over the flock of God.
3. To the elder's work once appointed, was to "hold fast the faithful word which they had been taught" when Paul and Titus was no longer with them. In other words - "hold things in order, or keep it together." Once established - keep it together! Make sure that the teaching is sound; the members are faithful and the business of the church is managed properly to the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
4. Finally, he charged the evil teachers and seducers to: "get their things in order." Notice why: "Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith. Not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men, that turn from the truth." Herein is the danger, it turns the church away from the truth. Like king, Hezekiah they are being admonished to “set their house in order,” 2 Kings 20:1. The evil teachers should be charged in every city and in every church to get their house in order.
BODY OF LESSON
I THE EVANGLIST'S CHARGE: "SET THINGS IN ORDER"
A. To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: "Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour," Titus 1:4. “The common faith” – is “the faith of God’s elect,” Titus 1:1. Paul gives the same admonition to Timothy, “my own son in the faith…As I besought thee…that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine,” 1 Timothy 1:1-3. Paul calls this “the truth which is after godliness.” Notice it was:
1. Conceived by God: “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.”
2. Commission by God: “But hath in due times manifested (made known) his word – through preaching.”
3. Committed by God: “Unto Paul and the other apostles according to the commandment of God our Savior.”
B. For this cause left I thee in Crete, “That thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting (lacking), and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed (ordered) thee,” Titus 1:5.
1. Left in Crete to "set things right." Gr: “epidiorthose,” a medical term. Like the doctor "sets a broken bone in place." Notice:
a. To establish or set a thing in place (one must know it is not in order).
b. Proceed to correct or set a thing in order.
c. It is broken; it must be fixed. It must be mended.
d. Things left unfinished will worsen – not get better!
2. "Things that are wanting." Or lacking! The things I left unfinished and undone. This is not a work that had gone wrong. Merely, time did not permit the Apostle to fully establish the work. This is not a reformation, but a formalization of the work! See Romans 1:11-12, Acts 8:14-17; Acts 19:1-7; 1 Timothy 5:22.
3. "And ordain elders in every city." The Gr: “katasteses” means to "appoint, ordain and set in place." To set down, bring to; place in an office; or in a condition. Titus was to appoint elders in every city; a plurality of these men in each city.
4. Paul ordained elders. “A when they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed," Acts 14:23. Illustrate: Paul’s appointment of elders.
5. "As I have appointed thee." The word "appointed" is Gr: “die – tassamen” or “dia-tasso” means "as I have ordered you." The meaning here is a command to appoint – elders. The evangelist Titus was under orders to “set things in order” on the isle of Crete. Brethren, this order have not been rescinded! Notice Paul: