The One Year Chronological Bible, NKJV (Tyndale, 2013), December 15
“Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect and the acknowledgement of the truth which accords with godliness” (Titus 1:1, emphasis added).
Today’s media glorifies sin. TV shows promote all flavors of sin while intentionally leaving out its dark underbelly—drinking without alcoholism, drugs without addictions, gambling without bankruptcy, promiscuity without pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases, adultery without relational brokenness, law-breaking without incarceration, etc. Every man is tempted by what he knows. Therefore, the enemy educates people regarding sin, but he always leaves out the consequences of sin. His is a knowledge that leads to entrapment.
Paul, however, teaches that the knowledge of truth leads to godliness. Paul refutes those who “profess to know God, but in works they deny Him” (1:16). The knowledge of the truth leads to godliness, not a sinful lifestyle. Paul therefore instructs Titus to teach the various groups within the church “the things which are proper for sound doctrine” (2:1):
- Older men (2:2) – “that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience.”
- Older women (2:3) – “the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things.”
- Younger women (2:4-5) – The older women were to teach the younger women to live in such a way that “the word of God may not be blasphemed.”
- Young men (2:6-8) – “Exhort the young men to be sober-minded . . . in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that may not be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say to you.”
- Workers (2:9-10) – Workers who were believers are to respond to their bosses in such a way “that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.”
The grace of God brings salvation, “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” (2:11-14, emphasis added).
Knowledge that doesn’t lead to godliness is simply data or information, but the knowledge of the truth impacts how people live.
Questions from today’s chronological Bible reading (1 Tim. 6:11-21; Titus; 2 Timothy 1:1-18):
Paul establishes high and righteous standards for church leaders. What does responding to the grace of God that brings salvation produce in both leaders and followers’ lives?
In the beginning of 2 Timothy, what does Paul reveal about himself and his spiritual journey to encourage Timothy?