Summary: Father’s day sermon.
Doing What Is Good
1 Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men.
3 At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. 8 This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone.
9 But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless. 10 Warn a divisive person once, and then warn him a second time. After that, have nothing to do with him. 11 You may be sure that such a man is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.
12 As soon as I send Artemas or Tychicus to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, because I have decided to winter there. 13 Do everything you can to help Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way and see that they have everything they need. 14 Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order that they may provide for daily necessities and not live unproductive lives.
15 Everyone with me sends you greetings. Greet those who love us in the faith.
15 Grace be with you all.
Happy Father’s Day, dads.
I thought we’d start this lesson off with a little video that says it pretty well. (Imitation video from Sermoncentral).
Titus 3 tells us three times that we are to be ready to do what is good. When you look at verse 1, verse 8 and verse 14 you find that Titus tells us: Be ready, be careful and be learning to do what is good. Now it’s tempting to make that the sermon outline. Normally, I would have been unable to keep from succumbing to such a clear three point lesson. When you’ve been preaching as long as I have you enjoy finding those ready made messages. It will be there next time.
Today, though, being Father’s Day, made me look at this with an eye to find something for dads that would encourage and strengthen us for devotion to doing deeds that dads need to do. I found it in verses 3-8. This is the heart behind the doing of what is good. It reminds us that good works without God’s grace is a losing cause.
Remember 1 Corinthians 13? The first few verses of that chapter lay it out clearly: If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but have not love, I am just a noisy gong or clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and understand all mysteries and even if I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Though I give all I have the feed the poor and thought I give my body to be burned, but have not love, I am nothing.
Good deeds without God’s love equals zero. Devotion to great works without God’s grace is chasing the wind.
Remember the Ephesian church in Revelation 2? 1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:
These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands: 2 I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. 3 You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary.
4 Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love. 5 Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.
What’s the point? This church was working hard but had lost sight of the reason for the labors. This is deadly. The next generation will never carry the torch if the generation that hands it to them doesn’t carry it and hand it off in love. This is the work of God’s grace and love in us. Without God’s grace and love in us, what happens? Jesus tells us that the lights go out. The lamp is removed. That means the next generation doesn’t carry the torch. It means that it all dies with us! That’s no comfort.