I’m reading through Paul’s letters and I must confess that I thought I would just breeze through Titus. I don’t know why I thought less of the book, I mean the Word of God is the living, active Word of God. But for some reason I did. Now, I’ve spent a whole week in this three chapter book. I love it. Chapter’s 2 and 3 are like a mini Romans – the Cliff’s Notes version. Look at these verses in chapter 2:
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. (11-14)
Can’t you see Romans 12:1 in there? He’s saying that we should think about the grace of God. Think about our salvation and what that means in our lives. We should be different. Because of our salvation: we should live differently and we should be eagerly working for our Lord! (“zealous for good works)”.
Look at what he says in chapter 3 verses 4 through 8:
But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people.
What a description of the gospel. But remember, he’s not writing to lost people. He’s writing to the church, the saved, the saints, His servants. He’s saying that we should be talking about the gospel. We should be discussing God and who He is. His love. His goodness. His grace. We should explore His attributes. Understanding who He is makes what He did for us even more amazing. Then we should explore what He did for us. Talk about salvation: our sin, Jesus Christ, the cross, the resurrection. We should search the scriptures to know what that means for us. Is it just fire insurance? Or is it more? Are we just waiting on heaven or does it change us here? We are heirs now! We are His children through adoption by His blood.
Why should we continually teach these things? Did you see the “so that?” Of course you did, I put it in bold print. So that we – the church, the people of God, His children – would devote our selves to good works. It’s Romans 12:1.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices,holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship.
What’s he saying? Something like, go serve like it’s worship to a holy, loving God who wondrously saved you by the sacrifice of His Son and has showered you with blessings beyond our finite human imaginations. Something like that.