Saturday, March 15, 2014

Titus 1.1-4 / Salutation

Group warm up time:
Compare and contrast the salutations of the three “Pastoral Epistles” (1 & 2 Timothy and Titus).
What do we learn about the character of God in Titus 1.1-4?

Titus 1.1-4 / Salutation
1 Timothy 1.1-2
1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God our Savior and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope,
2 To Timothy, a true son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
2 Timothy 1.1-2
1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus,
2 To Timothy, a beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
§         Apostle of Jesus Christ, God our Savior, hope/promise of life, grace, peace
§         “The salutation [in Titus]  is remarkably long and heavy for such a short epistle.”  –Thomas Constable

Theme/Big idea:  “…Christianity is based on the truth of the gospel and demands the response of faith lived out in a godly life.” –William Mounce
I. Paul
A.  Servant of God
  • Not a house servant, minister, or deacon, but doulos the lowest
  • Believers should behave a slaves to God (1 Cor 7.22; Eph. 6.6; Col 3.22-24)
  • Undoubtedly the background for the concept of being the Lord’s slave or servant is to be found in the Old Testament scriptures.  Fr the Jew this concept did not connote drudgery, but honor and privilege.  It was used of national Israel at times (Isa 43:10), but was especially associated with famous OT personalities, including such great men as Moses (Joshua 14.7), David (Ps 89.3 cf. 2 Sam 7.5, 8), and Elijah (2 Kings 10.10); all these man were ‘servants (or slaves) of the Lord.’
B.  Apostle of Jesus Christ
    1. Speaks of his authority: “of Jesus Christ” alludes to the commission received on the road to Damascus
    2. Speaks of his mission:  Speaking what Jesus Christ taught him.
II.  The Elect
A. 1st  Objective of his Apostleship    
according to… (1. in accordance with)  2. with the purpose of
1.  Faith  -
§         (Could be used in its creedal sense of that body of truth that we believe in.) 
§         Could be used in the verb sense of a response to the truth.  That understanding would see a reference to conversion and the resulting walk of faith.
of God’s elect”:  We can debate and differ on the basis of God’s choosing, but still all rest in the security that God’s  election provides.
The “unelect” can give sincere assent, but not have saving faith (James 2)
2. Knowledge  - epignosis – Understanding that results in experience.  Not just book learning, but experienced knowledge (ex. Scott (gnoskw) knows woodwind instruments, but he epignoskw the trumpet.)
Christian truth is not a concept to just be discussed.  It your faith something for you to talk about or act on?
3. according to godliness -
§         Godliness was not a reference to keeping the ceremonial law.
§         “…the repetition of “good works” emphasizes the point (Titus 1:16; 2:7, 14; 3.1, 5, 8, 14).  The truth of the Gospel changes life from ungodliness (Titus 2.12) to holy living.  – Wiersbe
§         …right belief and right behavior are inseparable.  --William Mounce

B. 2nd  Objective  (hope)
        in hope of eternal life  Also in Titus 2.13; 3.11
§         Do we posses eternal life now or wait for it in the future?
§         “hope” here vs. John 3:36 “has the Son has life”; We have eternal life in a real way now, but not in its completest sense.  We still look forward.
§         1 Thess 4.13  “…lest you sorrow at those who have no hope.”
1. Promised  -- What attributes of God are these promises based on.
-- God who cannot lie
before time began
§         If it was “before time began” or ‘before the ages”
§         “What was God doing before He created the Earth?  (No before or after with God.  He is outside the realm of time.)
§         What does if mean that the promise of eternal life was in place before creation and before sin?
2. Preached
a.  Appointed time  (cf. Galatians 4.4)
§         God entered the time-space continuum
§         appointed speaks of God’s design and control of history
b. Entrusted
§         By God’s command
§         To Paul  (Note the personal responsibility.)  Has it been entrusted to you?
(God our Savior:  Jesus did not persuade and  unwilling, angry God the Father to relent and let us be saved.  The Father is our savior.)

III. Titus
A. Description  true son
“Philosophers and rabbis spoke of their disciples as their children (1 & 2 Timothy1.1)”  --IVPBBC
“I’m an Apostle and this is my man.  He speaks on my behalf.”

B. Blessing
1. What
§         grace has a link back to the OT concept of God’s hesed, -- covenant love
§         peace  brings to mind the OT concept of shalom, – single/undivided wholeness, well being,  harmony, & peace
2. Origin
a. God the Father
b. Christ Jesus  Savior

“…Christianity is based on the truth of the Gospel and demands the response of faith lived out in a godly life.”  --William Mounce in WBC

Converted:  Elect, believing
Being sanctified:   Living Godly
Anticipating glorification:  the hope of eternal life