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Remind your people. Crete had been under Roman control for about 100 years at this time, but the people were restive! The circumcision party said no believer in the True God had any responsibility to the civil government and its laws, because these things were purely human. Paul had to fight against this kind of thinking everywhere he went!!! Compare Rom. Ch. 13. Christians are to be good citizens! Every good thing that the civil government might require them to do.
Not to speak evil of anyone because of his race or religion. Peaceful and friendly. A Christian is not to be contentious, but to keep his temper, be ready to forgive others, avoid prejudice, be honest and fair, and try to live at peace with everyone. See James 3:17-18.
For we ourselves. Paul speaks of “we Christians” in general, not himself. Foolish, disobedient, and wrong. “Even we Jews can’t talk about others, because we were once foolish in our thinking about religion and the traditions handed down to us. So the very same thing is true of both Jews and Gentiles.” We were slaves. See 1 Peter 4:3-4. We spent our lives. Remembering our own faults ought to make us more tolerant about judging others and keep us from severely scolding them when they fall into sin through their weakness. See Galatians 6:1-10.
But when. “The only reason any of us are different now, is that God our Savior acted in Christ to set us free!”
He saved us. “We could not save ourselves, so He acted to give us a way out of our doom!” See Romans 8:1-4 and notes. It was not because. We could not place an obligation on Him! But because. His own mercy, based on his love (1 John 4:8-10), is the reason why he saved us! Through. God requires us to reach out through faith to seize the sacrifice of Christ! Salvation is not achieved, but seized!!! God saves those who respond to his act in Christ. The washing. Ephesians 5:26 points this to the birth of “water and the Spirit” (John 3:5-7 and notes). By which. This is the point of contact. The Holy Spirit. He is the proximate contiguous source of our life. See John 3:6 and note. Gives us. Galatians 3:27; 2 Corinthians 5:17. The Expositor’s Greek Testament says: “The verse may be paraphrased as a statement of fact thus: – God saved us by Baptism, which involves two complementary processes, (a) the ceremony itself which marks the actual moment in time of the new birth, and (b) the daily, hourly, momently renewing of the Holy Spirit, by which the spiritual life is supported and fostered and increased. And the moving cause of this exceeding kindness of God was not any merits of our own, but His mercy.” [On (b), see note on 1 Corinthians 6:11.]
God poured out. God showed that he would accept the Gentiles, by pouring out the Holy Spirit on them (Acts 10:44 and note). Joel had predicted this (Acts 2:16-21). Every Christian has the Holy Spirit as a gift (Acts 5:32 and note).
We might be put right with God. God’s act in Christ makes it possible for us to change! [Justify = pronounce not guilty.] Compare Romans 2:13; Romans 8:4 and notes. And come into possession. As adopted children of God, everything He has belongs to us as well!!!
This is a true saying. What he has just pointed out in Titus 3:4-7. Special emphasis. “Belief in God is not just some idea to argue about; it is a whole new way of life! Good works help others, and they make the one who does them happy both in this world and in the next!”
But avoid stupid arguments. See note on Titus 1:15. The circumcision party were very proud of their family records, and tried to use such things to make slaves of the Gentile Christians. See 1 Timothy 1:3-4 and notes.
Give at least two warnings. Stupid arguments are dangerous things to the life of the congregation. Those who start trouble about such things must be dealt with firmly. Then have nothing more. This is what Jesus said to do with such a person (Matthew 18:15-17). But notice this is the final action, and you only do this after all other means have failed to get the person to respond.
His sins prove that he is wrong. It is a waste of time to argue with such a person. He is self-condemned, because his separation from the church is due to his own act. Paul would say this one is condemned by his former spiritual self. But notice Jude 1:22-23.
When I send. It was important that someone be there on Crete to replace Titus. Titus was not “bishop of Crete” in the modern sense, but a teaching evangelist (see note on Ephesians 4:11), and so were Artemas (who is only mentioned here) and Tychicus. Nicopolis. A town in the edge of Dalmatia (Illyricum) on the west coast of Greece. It was named for the victory of Actium by the armies of Emperor Augustus. Traditional history says Paul did spend the winter there, that he was again arrested and taken to Rome where he was later executed.
Zenas the lawyer and Apollos. “Teachers of the Law” were often called lawyers. Zenas is mentioned only here, We met Apollos in Acts 18:24, etc. It was standard practice for congregations to help the evangelists on their travels, with money and supplies.
To provide for real needs. Such as mentioned in Titus 3:13. Christianity teaches a “work-ethic” (see Ephesians 4:28; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13). The gospel does have a social side!
All who are with me. As an apostle, Paul was always a center of religious activity. It is probable that he taught a “school of preaching,” in which he trained evangelists to send out. The apostle John did this. With you all. The form of Paul’s final greeting implies he intended all the Christians on Crete to share in this Letter.
These files are public domain.
Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on Titus 3". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29