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Sound Doctrine

Sound Doctrine     Thursday, June 22, 2017

Sound Doctrine  (KJV)

By Mary Lee & James L. Thornton

Titus 2:1. But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine

The Apostle Paul uses this phrase (sound doctrine) four times as he gives instruction to the young ministers that will be responsible to help guide the Churches in the future ages. In this passage (Titus 2:1) he is speaking of healthy teaching, or life giving instructions.

 Wherever this teaching has come, its influence and effects have been such that life has been lifted. All through the generations the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been lifting the life of the world.

Paul is telling them to hold fast to the sure and trustworthy Word of God as they have been taught, so that they may be able to give stimulating instruction and encouragement in sound (wholesome, healthy) doctrine, and to refute and convict those who oppose it.

We intend by these lessons to follow the Apostle's example and teach what is fitting and becoming to sound doctrine which applies to the character and right living that identify true Christians.

The demeanor (bearing, appearance, manner, attitude) of old men, the behavior of old women, the influence of the aged upon the young, the innermost domestic duties of the wife and mother, words, deeds, looks, dress, temper, disposition, affections, as well as the servants (employees) fidelity, all come under the constraining influence of the Gospel as preached by Paul.

Titus 2:1. But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:
2. That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. {sober: or, vigilant} 

1. PAUL BEGINS WITH SOUND DOCTRINE FOR AGED MEN:

The apostle begins with the most important class in the church--those who are the leaders of the young, those who by experience of age have stood the test of time. The aged (both men and women) are to be examples to the flock.

Older men, as leaders, are to be moral and spiritual examples. They are to be responsible and sensible patterns for the younger generation.

There are appropriate fruits for every time of life, and the aged Christian man bringeth forth fruit in his season. Old age should be cheerful, but fun should be without frivolity and laughter without being silly.

REVERENCE DUE THE AGED:

We look for sobriety of character as the results of the experience of a man who has found that there are limits to all expectations. Gravity in one who is nearing his great rewards. Temperance in one who is supposed to have trampled down all the fierce passions of youth. We reverence age for the consistency of long years of life, and fidelity to conscience and to Christ.

Fruits that may ripen with age.

Faith is a grace that grows. As men know more of Christ by heart-experiences and life-experiences, so ought their faith to increase in Him whose promises have been "yea and amen."

Charity, alike in kindly dealings with others, in tolerance of other opinions, being without prejudice, always ready to give a helping hand.

Patience. For while manhood has to work, age at eventide of life has to wait, sometimes in pain or in weakness. Still "they serve" while they wait, by prayer and quiet submission to the great will, the Lord's will. They are examples to the flock.

2. DUTIES OF THE AGED MEN:

1. "Be sober, …" Or sobriety, or sober-minded, worthy of respect.

This habit of mind is contrasted with the thoughtlessness and lightness of manner of youth, and it is combined with watchfulness, and prayer.

1 Thessalonians 5:6. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober (to curb one's passions). 

1 Peter 4:7. But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober (to curb one's passions), and watch unto prayer. 

1 Peter 1:13. Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober (be calm and collected in spirit), and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 

Ephesians 5:15. See then that ye walk circumspectly (exactly, accurately, diligently), not as fools, but as wise, 

2. "Grave, …" In the sense of a dignified bearing. Worthy of being looked-up to.

If they are grave in speech and walk, they will have more influence in the community. Old men ought not to lend themselves to lightness of manner or speech, especially when inappropriate. Frivolity and inconstancy should have no place in elder men.

1 Timothy 3:8. Likewise must the deacons be grave (inspiring awe or admiration, having dignity, worthy of reverence) not double-tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; 

Acts 6:3. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. 

3. "Temperate, …" Discreet and of a sound mind, being sane in one's senses, and curbing one's desires and impulses, having self control or restraint.

The aged ought to show an example of self government in regard to their passions, their appetites, and their will.

1 Corinthians 9:25. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 

4. "Sound in faith, …" The conviction that God exists and is the creator and ruler of all things, the provider and bestower of Eternal Salvation through Christ.

Hebrews 11:6. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to god must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. 

The old have their hopes sustained by faith; their hearts are cheered by faith; they remain steadfast through faith. It at once must be the principal of their worship, their Godliness, their piety, and their endurance.

Hebrews 11:13. These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. 

5. "In charity, …" Brotherly love, affection, good will, love, benevolence. The old are apt to become with-drawn and cold in their sympathies. But Christian love keeps the heart young and tender and sincere, and the old illustrate its power in growing tolerance, wisdom, and kindliness.

1 Corinthians 13:4. Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, {vaunteth...: or, is not rash}
5. Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6. Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; {in the truth: or, with the truth}
7. Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8. Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. {fail: gr. Vanish away} 

1 Corinthians 16:14. Let all your things be done with charity. 

Colossians 3:14. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. 

1 Timothy 1:5. Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: 

1 Peter 4:8. And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. 

1 John 3:17. But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? 

6. "In patience." steadfastness, constancy, endurance. In the New Testament the characteristic of a person who is not swerved from his deliberate purpose and his loyalty to faith and piety by even the greatest trials and sufferings.

The aged have to bear many infirmities of body, with declining faculties, while growing weaker with old age. But Christian patience must be more than a mere acceptance with the inevitable; it must be a cheerful acceptance of suffering "that patience may have her perfect work" in the closing days of life.

James 1:4. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. 

Luke 21:19. In your patience possess ye your souls. 

Romans 5:3. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
4. And patience, experience; and experience, hope: 

Romans 15:4. For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. 

Colossians 1:11. Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; 

Hebrews 10:36. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promis

James 5:11. Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy. 

Revelation 14:12. Here is the patience of the Saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
13. And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, write, blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: yea, saith the spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them. 

2. Sound doctrine for the aged (older) women:

Titus 2:3. The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
4. That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, {sober: or, wise}
5. To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. 

Paul continues his exhortation to the elderly by placing the aged (older) women along-side the aged men (older) as teachers and examples to the younger generation.

As women had attained through Christianity a position of equality besides man as leaders and teachers, it was to remind her that her position involved serious responsibilities.

Duties of the aged women:

1. "Be in behaviour as becometh holiness, …" it is an appeal to that which is lady-like and proper in the Christian character.

1 Timothy 2:10. But (which becometh women professing Godliness) with good works. 

Their holy calling should manifest itself in their character, dress, speech, silence, and, above all, "in a meek and quiet spirit." (1 Peter 3:4)

Holiness embraces far more than the way the Christian woman (or man) dresses or fixes their hair, even though that plays an essential part.

1 Peter 3:1. Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation (manner of life) of the wives;
2. While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.
3. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;
4. But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. 

It is a wonderful thing when both husband and wife are walking together in the fellowship of Christ. But this is not always the case. There are more Christian women in most Churches than men, and many times this poses a hardship on the wife who truly wants their husbands to be saved.

Some husbands simply would not allow themselves to be persuaded. They were obstinate, non-persuadable type. They would not listen to reason. The wives had often confronted their husbands with the gospel. The husbands had met it with stiff-necked, obstinate rejection.

Peter says they can be won without the word (Without constantly talking about the Gospel). Husbands are won to the Lord, not by nagging, but by Holy Living. Most of these husbands know the gospel. The wife's Christian example will win them to the Lord.

The meaning of the word "conversation" has changed since the Bible was translated into English. Today it means an exchange of words with someone. Then it meant "One's behavior, or manner of life." this manner of life included in it submissiveness to their husbands.

Both Paul and Peter wanted to impress upon the church that simply because a husband and wife both were not saved it did not justify dissolution of marriage.

Peter forbids them to depend upon outward adornment to win their husbands, especially worldly adornments. Like they wore before they were saved, immodest, gaudy, and conspicuous. (1 Peter 3:3)

It is a mistake to think that if you dressed as the world dressed, that it would please the unsaved husband and win him to Christ. You will nullify your Christian testimony by your appearance.

Our adornments should not be diverse from one's character. If we are to be a Christian we should dress like a Christian. Peter says a wife should not be Christian at heart and her adornments that of a person of the world.

The Roman women were addicted to ridiculous extravagance in their hair, with elaborate hairdos. A Christian should not have a conspicuous, extravagant, intricate artificiality in their hair.

The latest styles and fads will not give you better access to someone to lead them to the lord. In fact, it will be a hindrance. The Holy Ghost does not use the styles of the world in winning a lost soul to the Lord. An artificial display destroys the personal testimony of the soul winner.

We may be fundamental in our doctrine and yet defeat the power of the word we give out by the modernism and worldliness of our appearance. God wants to glorify himself in the personality and life of the Christian.

God made man in his own image and through that image is the way he wants to reveal himself. But, if that image is marred, and distorted by artificiality, it becomes imperfect, and the beauty of the Lord is hidden beneath a veneer of worldliness.

Peter forbids the wearing of gaudy, expensive, elaborate jewelry. Dress like the world, act like the world and the world thinks them to be people of the world. Then, when they come with the news of the Gospel their message falls on deaf ears.

"But let it be the hidden man of the heart, .." (1 Peter 3:4a)

Let your adornments be from within. Let the Holy Ghost radiate from within. The adornments must be spiritual not physical.

"In that which is not corruptible, even the adornment of a meek and quiet spirit, which in the sight of God of great price." (1 Peter 3:4b)

Jesus in the only self description ever given of himself, "meek and lowly." (Matthew 11:29)

2. "Not false accusers, .." true women. The second thing on Paul’s list of duties for the aged (older) women is not to become slanderers of others, or accusing falsely. (Titus 2:3)

The Ninth Commandment deals with this.
Exodus 20:16. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour. 

The aged (older)Christian women are not to become slanderers, because it separates friends, causes deadly wounds in character, brings dishonor to the Gospel, and causes discord in the church.

1 Timothy 5:13. And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not. 

James 3:5. Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!
6. And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. 

3. Not given to much wine, …" temperate women. Not to be enslaved to wine. It was a demand that they should give up the slavish addictedness to wine so common in society. The old are easily addicted to wine and use it as a crutch, or solace in old age. We see how the Gospel purifies the habits and practices of society.

4. "Teachers of good things; …" Useful women. Every aged (older) women has a large ministry to fulfill when she remembers how large is the category of "good things." with a wealth of experience (experience is the best teacher), and the wealth of knowledge gained from experience, Paul says use this knowledge to teach others the good way.

Paul enumerates some of the things that the aged women should teach.

Titus 2:4. That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, {sober: or, wise}
5. To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of god be not blasphemed. 

The young women are regarded as under the instruction and guidance of the aged (older) women. In Ephesus Timothy was exhorted to teach the younger women (1 Timothy 5), but it is probable that the state of the Cretans community required that the instructions of Titus should be supplemented by the practical and continuous guidance of the elderly women. The younger women were to be schooled (to teach, to disciple) to their duties in a wise manner.

3. Sound Doctrine For Younger Women:

1. "To love their husbands, .." they were to be instructed to be lovers of their own husbands. The wife will find in this love the source of her strength, the husband the solace and support for his care and the children the guarantee for their happiness. A loving wife is a blessing to her husband, she brings him honor, anchors his confidence, and earns his praises.

Proverbs 12:4. A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones. 

Proverbs 31:10. Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.
11. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
28. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. 

2. "To love their children, …" A mother's love is a blessing to the human race. It should be a matter of instinct. So, why would Paul feel compelled to tell Titus to have the young women taught to love their children? This is the only passage in the Bible that tells mothers to love their children.

The answer can be found in the first chapter of Titus.
Titus 1:12. One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, the Cretians are always liars, evil beasts (have a savage nature), slow bellies (laziness, gluttonous).
13. This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith; 

Christianity was born in an age of barbarism and idolatry.

An age when human life and freedom had little value. Many wives of that day had no more value to husbands than their slaves. And, women in general lived in very degraded conditions. Children born into these homes many times were unwanted and neglected simply because there was no natural love displayed in the home. Some were even offered in sacrifice to the idol gods of the people. This very fact has been proven in human cultures all over the ancient world.

Christianity came to offer all classes of the human race, women, children, slaves, the battered, and the neglected, a better life. It would take many centuries for many of these to see the results of what Jesus envisioned for them. The Jewish race was the first to raise the standard for women. But Christianity has done more for the human race than any other religion. It taught people to be Christ-like (Christians).

As women and slaves (Titus 2:9-10) came into the Church they had to be taught what Christ expected of them as Christians. To bear his name (Christian, or Christ-like), they were to live like him. Paul felt that the Gospel working in the home would do more to change people than any other thing. Christianity must work in our homes to be effective. Mankind requires training. It needs physical training, intellectual training, and, above all, spiritual training, the training of the soul into a higher life, and this must begin in the home.

That is the reason that Paul instructed Titus to tell the aged women to teach the young women to love their husbands and children that they also may teach their children, and bring them up in "The nurture and admonition of the Lord." (Ephesians 6:4) this is more than a natural love, it is a Christian love, taking care of their souls as well as their bodies.

The mother was the teacher but God was the author of these things. Such truths, understood through faithful, loving, training, works for the up-building of a true religious character. Children should be made to realize in their early years that these were divine truths, the revelation of God, having divine authority.

The reason is given in Titus 2:5. "… That the word of God be not blasphemed."

Failure of these duties in the home would be greatly to the reproach of Christianity.

3. "To be discreet, …"
(1.) "Of a sound mind, sane, in one's senses, sensible,
(2.) Curbing one's desires and impulses, self-controlled, temperate. That calm quietude of heart and mind which is not intoxicated by vanity, or carried away with the sensationalism of pleasure." (Strong’s)

Generally, the woman of the house sets the atmosphere of the home. It is her Christian duty to help keep contentious feeling under control, both her own and those of her household.

Proverbs 21:9. It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house. {a brawling...: Heb. A woman of contentions} 

Matthew 5:5. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. 

Matthew 5:9. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of god. 

Proverbs 14:1. Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands. 

Proverbs 19:14. House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the lord. 

4. "Chaste, .."

(1) sacred, (2) pure, (2a) pure from carnality, chaste, modest, (2b) pure from every fault, immaculate, (2c) clean, (2d) free from defilement." (Strong's)

Teach the young women purity of the body, freedom from obscenity in language and life. Nothing in society is more beautiful than a thoroughly chaste woman--chaste in language, chaste in dress, chaste in movement; and nothing is more disgusting than the reverse--a woman unclean in appearance, in dress, in language, in manners.

Purity makes queenly women, the beauty of womanhood is chastity. Paul is dealing in moral issue mostly in this command. Genuine morality is the grand purpose of Gospel teaching.

Proverbs 31:10. Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies. 

Proverbs 12:4. A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones. 

Luke 1:5. There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth.
6. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. 

Luke 1:28. And the angel came in unto her, and said, hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. {highly...: or, graciously accepted, or, of much grace} 

5. "Keepers at home, .." (a guard, be a keeper at home, caring for the house, working at home, the (watch or) keeper of the house, and taking care of household affairs.)" (Strong's) they are to be the guardians of the home.

Wives must work as well as husbands. Work is a condition of health and true enjoyment. An idle wife is a downfall both to herself and her family. This may not mean entirely in her own house, but her own sphere, it may be in the garden, in the field, the schoolroom, the office, the church.

They are to make home first of all a center of attraction by its order and cleanliness and comfort, then by its harmonies of peace and love, so that no discordant notes may mar the music of its joys. This is done by avoiding gossiping visits, and the excitement of habitual restlessness, always securing the economy and the honor of a wife who weaves all into beauty and order at home.

Proverbs 31:24. She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25. Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27. She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
28. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. 

Ruth 2:17. So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.
18. And she took it up, and went into the city: and her mother in law saw what she had gleaned: and she brought forth, and gave to her that she had reserved after she was sufficed. 

Acts 9:36. Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas: this woman was full of good works and almsdeeds which she did. 

6. "Good, …" "(1) Of good constitution or nature, (2) useful, salutary, (3) good, pleasant, agreeable, joyful, happy, (4) excellent, distinguished, (5) upright, honorable" (Strong's). Kindness is the leading idea in the word "good."

Christian women are to be kindly and thoughtful in their family relationships, especially to household employees, not grudging and scanty towards any. They are to be easy to please and get along with. This word "good" covers all of our (men or women) dealings with other people.

7. "Obedient to their own husbands, …"
"a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden". (Strong’s)

1 Peter 3:1. Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
2. While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. 

This has been Biblical teaching since the days of Adam and Eve.

Genesis 3:16. Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. {subject to thy husband} 

Many cultures and societies have used this scripture to place the women in a role in which it was not intended. Women were, and in some societies still are, assigned to an obscure place, position, or condition that is next to slavery, giving them few, if any rights. This God did not intend. It would take centuries for many of the changes to take place but thank God Christianity has helped to alleviate the bondage that many women have had to suffer.

On the other hand women's rights groups have tried to swing the balance too far to the left of its original meaning. There is a happy medium which the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings to the world. The Gospel makes the husband and wife a team working together for the happiness and the good of the home.

Ephesians 5:28. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
29. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the lord the church:
30. For we are members of his body, of His flesh, and of His bones.
31. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
32. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the Church.
33. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. 

Paul likens the union of husband and wife to the union of Christ and the Church. He emphasizes that love is the bond which ought to unite the husband and wife, yet teaches that a wife should reverence (to treat with deference or reverential obedience, giving first place) to her husband.

1 Peter 3:7. Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
8. Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:
9. Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. 

In these scriptures Peter is saying that the wife should be treated with honor. He uses the phrase "weaker vessel" not in derogative sense that the wife is a lesser vessel, but in the sense of physical strength, not mental or spiritual deficiencies.

Peter emphasizes that husband and wife are heirs together of the grace of life. If quarrels and contentions (v.9) between them exist, God would withhold the blessings of life.

4. DUTIES OF THE YOUNG MEN:

Titus 2:6. Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. {sober...: or, discreet} 

The Apostle thinks of those who are to be the strong support of the church in the coming generation. "Young men exhort to be sober-minded." (v.6)

The Lord God speaking to his people in the old testament,
Haggai 1:7. Thus saith the Lord of Hosts; consider your ways. {consider...: heb. Set your heart on your ways} 

Young men ought to be thoughtful, not rash and impulsive.

Paul says again,
Ephesians 5:15. See then that ye walk circumspectly (exactly, accurately, diligently), not as fools, but as wise, 

They should not be self-indulgent, but self-denying. Not lovers of pleasure, but lovers of God.

1 John 2:13b. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. 

1 John 2:14b. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one. 

The apostle John commends the young men because they have overcome the wicked one. And, again because they are strong (in Christ) and they have the word of God hid in their hearts.

An exhortation to Titus himself to be an example:

Titus 2:7. In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity,
8. Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you. 

As a faithful minister of God, he is to mirror forth in his life and teachings the doctrines of the gospel. His whole life is to be an example, "in all things." this implies consistency in toil, endurance, holiness, and teaching.

"Gravity, sincerity," means he must have a dignified manner, to indicate his profound seriousness of purpose and spirit. Foolish jesting and vain talking are very inconvenient in a Minister of the Gospel. The Gospel he delivers must have convincing power and this can only come from gravity and sincerity.

"Sound speech that cannot be condemned, …" Ministers must expect their words to be sharply criticized as well as their lives. The truth ought to be brought in such a spirit and with such a regard to truth that it cannot be justly found fault with. Real convicting preaching is based on the word of God and not on ideas and manmade philosophy.

1 Corinthians 2:4. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: {enticing: or, persuasible} 

2 Peter 1:16. For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. 

5. THE DUTIES OF SERVANTS, WORKERS, EMPLOYEES;

Titus 2:9. Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; {answering...: or, gainsaying}
10. Not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of god our saviour in all things. 

At the time the Apostle was writing a majority of the population was living in abject slavery. A large number of these slaves had received a wonderful elevation through the Gospel. They were an oppressed class, and may have been tempted to imagine that their religious freedom necessarily changed their relations to their old masters.

Thus, we can account for the large number of times this is addressed in the New Testament to this class of believers. (Ephesians 6:5; Colossians 3:22; 1 Timothy 6:1-2; Titus 2:9; 1 Peter 2:18)

"Obedient unto their own masters, .." This was a manifest obligation which the Gospel did not annul. It may have been a hard duty, but, the Gospel supplied grace for the faithful discharge of it. It mattered not whether the master was a Christian or a pagan, the Gospel did not destroy his claims to obedient service. But the obedience was necessarily limited by the divine law, for a servant could not sin at a master's command, even if he faced punishment.

As slavery no longer exists in most society we would need to look at this command in the light of our occupations as workers or employees. Being a Christian did not annul the curse placed upon the human race by the sin of Adam whereby God said, "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground" (Genesis 3:19a).

Thereby most of human society must work for their living. As employees we must, many times, work at things we don't like to do, and under conditions that are not enjoyable.

"And to please them well in all things; not answering again; …" a cheerful compliance with a master's will. The Christian servant, or employee, is enjoined to go a step farther than just doing enough to get by, or being acceptable. He is to "go the second mile" for his master or employer. Looking for ways to be helpful, volunteering to do things others complain about doing. Learning what needs to be done and going ahead and doing it without being told.

Do not show a bad disposition by grumbling and complaining about what has to be done. By being agreeable, and serving willingly, you will be doing the will of God and serving the common master of all, Jesus Christ, who gave to all an example of meekness and submission.

"Not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; .." (keep back, embezzle, withdraw covertly and appropriate to one's own use; Strong's) (petty thievery, pilfering, poaching, shoplifting, swiping, fleecing, looting, plunder; American Heritage Dictionary). Employees are to be honest and truthful in their workplace. (Fidelity, faithfulness, the character of one who can be relied on; Strong's)

Many slaves and servants in ancient times were entrusted with the property of their masters (Genesis 39:4; Matthew 25:14). Thus they had many ways of showing their honesty. It was in their power to defraud them by embezzling, or to waste the property, or to allow it to be wasted without checking or rebuke.

Servants, employees, should have the interests of the place of employment at heart, and look out for, and by all means, not take part in dishonest practices. Many times people take small things (purloin) saying, "that it won't hurt the company," but it makes one a thief in the sight of God. Paul is saying to be honest and truthful in all of our dealings with other people.

Genesis 39:4. And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand.
5. And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field.
6. And he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.

Matthew 25:14. For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.
15. And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.
16. Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents.
17. And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two.
18. But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord's money.
19. After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them.
20.
And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more.
21. His lord said unto him, well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
22.
He also that had received two talents came and said, lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them.
23. His lord said unto him, well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
24.
Then he which had received the one talent came and said, lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed:
25. And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.
26. His lord answered and said unto him, thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed:
27. Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own
with usury.
28. Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents.
29. For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.
30. And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
 

6. REASON FOR THE THINGS CONCERNING SOUND DOCTRINE:

"That they may adorn (to embellish with honor) the doctrine of God our saviour in all things."

The Savior is as fully glorified in the servant as in the master, in the poor as in the rich, in the peasant as in the king. Indeed the adornment of the Gospel seems more manifest in the obedience of the lowest class. The Savior is adorned, embellished with honor, when Christians of all ages and classes, live out these Godly principals.

Titus 2:11. For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
12. Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and Godly, in this present world;
13. Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14. Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
15. These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee. 

These are the reasons behind Paul’s emphasis on sound doctrine. The Lord is coming and He is coming after a "purified people." let us endeavor to become that kind of people through obedience of these teachings.

Hope you enjoyed this study, and will read the other studies on this web site.

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By Mary Lee & James L. Thornton

 

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