June 6, 2018
Titus 1:1-3… Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of God’s elect and their knowledge of the Truth, which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began and at the proper time manifested in His word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by command of God our Savior.
Paul writes really long sentences and puts a lot in them. I have found him to be a very purposeful writer. Not everyone appreciates him. I have heard some people complain that he rambles on. One could say that about today’s sentence but I find it most revealing.
First, he defines himself according to his relationship to God, not his success as a tent maker which he did to pay the bills at times. He was a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ. He put those in proper order. If you claim to be an apostle of Jesus, but you are not a servant of God, you are a fake and could be trying to make money from a title. First and foremost, we are all servants of God. Then, after giving those credentials, he tells why he is writing this letter… “For the sake of God’s elect and their knowledge of the Truth.” That reminds the reader of the value of knowledge… proper knowledge. He goes on to describe the knowledge of the Truth… “Which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began…” The knowledge of the Truth accords with godliness. It occurs to me this morning that we are quick to apply that to other people but not as much to ourselves. We judge people by their grasp of Truth according to our interpretations. I wonder if people are predisposed to judge. That seems to be a natural response to life. If that be true, then part of the transformation is that we compare ourselves to the Truth, rather than other people. Transformation is from worldly understanding to Godly understanding. One emphasized teaching in the Bible is that God relates to us as individuals, not just as parts of a group. We have a tendency to hide behind group participation. We pride ourselves in “belonging to a certain church” or “helping a certain ministry” or any involvement that we are proud of. Jesus asks, simply, “Do I know you?”