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Bible Commentaries

Henry Mahan's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament
Titus 2

 

 


Verses 1-5

Behavior becoming of believers

Titus 2:1-5

In this chapter, Paul exhorts Titus to the full responsibility of his pastoral office toward all members of the assembly in regard to conversation, general behavior, godliness and duties toward one another. The nature of the gospel of Christ (Titus 2:11), the power and efficacy of the gospel (Titus 2:12) and the expectations of the gospel hope (Titus 2:13) will produce a godly life (2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 John 3:10-11).

Titus 2:1. ‘Speak out with all boldness’ (not fearing men nor seeking to please them) ‘that there is a life to be lived, an attitude to be shown and duties to be performed which are becoming to the gospel of God's grace and are the fruit of the Spirit of God, who indwells every believer’ (Galatians 5:22; 1 John 3:17-18).

Titus 2:2. The ‘aged men’ are men of the church who are older in years. ‘Exhort them to be sober’ (vigilant, especially watchful over themselves - their conduct, conversation and faithfulness in doctrine and spirit), for they are leaders and examples of younger members. ‘They should be grave’ (serious about spiritual and eternal matters). Foolishness, frivolity and unstableness are unbecoming to older believers. ‘They should be temperate in eating, drinking and all things that pertain to the flesh.’ Sometimes age causes people to give in and become addicted to more concern for the body and less for the soul. Exhort them, though they be unhealthy in body and weak in the flesh, that they be sound in faith and mind, strong in their love for Christ and his people and examples of patience, not only in bearing the infirmities of old age, but also the infirmities of others!

Titus 2:3. ‘Exhort the older women in the church to behave in clothing, speech, conduct and spirit as is becoming the character they bear and the name of Christ which they profess.’

‘Not false accusers.’ Older women who know not Christ are prone to gossip (talk too much about others), and in so doing often raise reports and false charges which cause division and misunderstanding.

‘Not given to much wine.’ Intemperance is scandalous in any believer, but especially in the female.

‘Teachers of good things’ – both by example and by instruction, but in their houses privately, for it is not the duty of women to teach and instruct publicly in the church. Let them teach ‘good things,’ not old wives' fables, superstitions and traditions not in keeping with scripture.

Titus 2:4-5. The older woman ought to teach the young women to be good wives, good mothers and godly women!

‘To be sober.’ The word here is ‘wise and prudent.’

‘To love their husbands.’ Many mothers and older women have been the cause of divorce, division and unhappiness in the homes of their daughters and friends by bad example, poor counsel and advice and a rebellious spirit against their husbands and all men in general (1 Corinthians 7:1-5; Ephesians 5:22-25). ‘Teach the young women to respect, obey, assist and submit to their husbands.’

‘To love their children’ - not with a foolish, ungoverned affection that makes idols and rebels of them, but with a godly love that brings them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord with firm discipline and instruction (Proverbs 13:24).

‘To be discreet.’ Women are not men, nor are they to try to act like or compete with men. Let them be feminine, ladylike and gentle, neither dressing like men nor assuming the role of leader and spokesperson.

‘Chaste’ – in body, words and actions, having their favors and affections to their own husbands.

‘Keepers at home.’ While the husband is the head of the home, the provider and the spiritual leader, the woman is perhaps the most important single factor and figure in a home. The home's happiness and unity depend largely on her love, her good management, her care and concern for every family member and her presence there at all times. She cannot fulfill this important place and be ‘a gadder abroad’!

‘Good’ – kind to their husbands, children, friends and guests who pass through their homes.

‘Obedient to their own husbands,’ as unto the Lord and in the Lord, for the husband is the head of the wife and God's voice of authority in the home.

‘That the word of God be not blasphemed.’ When those who profess to be believers in Christ and children of God behave in manner contrary to grace and the gospel of Christ, it causes unbelievers not only to doubt their profession and ridicule their religion, but also to question the truth of the gospel. ‘Is this what your Christ has made you? Is this what your Bible teaches? Then I want no part of it, for it must be a joke!’


Verses 6-15

Conduct which agrees with our doctrine

Titus 2:6-15

Titus 2:6. As it is fitting and proper for aged women to teach the young women how they should behave and conduct themselves, so the pastor and elders should instruct the young men to behave prudently, temperately and wisely, taking life and faith seriously! In actions and words, let us lead lives which agree with our preaching!

Titus 2:7. Doctrine and instructions in the grace of God will carry little authority and influence if the fruits of grace are not visible in the life of the instructor. It is not enough for us to deliver sound doctrine and truth; our words, works and attitude should be a pattern of what we preach. In ‘works,’ a ‘pattern.’ ‘In doctrine,’ having the strictest regard for truth with purity of motive, dignity and seriousness!

Titus 2:8. Our words should be wholesome and free from corruption, both in the pulpit and in private conversation, in public worship and in personal contact. ‘Sound speech’ in the ministry of the word is imperative, but it also relates to ordinary life and familiar conversation. Everything that unbelievers and wicked persons can seize upon, which to them is improper and unwholesome for a professed believer, they will use maliciously against Christ and the gospel. The result is that through our faults and carelessness the Lord Jesus is insulted.

Titus 2:9-10. Here are five words of counsel and instructions for those who work for other people and firms:

1. Be submissive and obedient to your employer, whether he is a believer or an unbeliever. You are hired and paid to do a job. Do it with all your heart as unto the Lord.

2. Seek to please your employer and give satisfaction in every way. Pride of workmanship and production is not to be condemned; laziness and indifference are a disgrace to the gospel.

3. Don't talk back or contradict. Do not reply to orders either in a sarcastic, saucy, or grumbling manner. The boss may not always be right, but he is always the boss!

4. Do not steal from your firm either time, money or things which you consider of small value. Do not convert to your own use, without permission, that which belongs to the company.

5. Prove yourselves to be loyal, reliable and faithful. It is not loyalty nor faithfulness to criticize and find fault with your employer behind his back. Keep trusts and confidences which are committed to you.

In fulfilling the part of a good servant and loyal employee you are able to adorn the gospel you believe. You make that gospel attractive to others as they see you walk worthy of it.

Titus 2:11-12. ‘The grace of God’ – his sovereign, free, unchangeable, eternal grace to sinners in Christ, through Christ and by the merits of Christ. His gospel of grace that brings salvation, forgiveness, righteousness and eternal life has not only been delivered to us by Christ, but has been revealed to all of us by the Holy Spirit!

This gospel of grace and salvation teaches us to reject all idolatry, ungodliness and worldly desires, and to live uprightly, temperately and in a godly manner in this present world! The grace of God for us and his mercy to us present the strongest argument and motive for obedience. ‘If God so loved us, we ought to love one another. No motive is stronger than love’ (John 15:14).

Titus 2:13. ‘Awaiting and looking for the fulfillment, the realization of our blessed hope.’ What is the believer's blessed hope? Christ is the object and ground of our hope. Christ in us is our hope of glory. His appearing is in one sense our blessed hope, for it is at his appearing that our full redemption, both body and soul, will be revealed (Romans 8:18-19; Romans 8:22-23). Our blessed hope is also a hope of blessedness! (Psalms 17:15; Colossians 1:5; 1 John 3:2-3.)

Titus 2:14. Here is another argument for and exhortation to godliness of character and conduct, drawn from the design and effect of the sacrifice and death of our Lord. He gave himself for us that he might redeem us from iniquity and sanctify for himself a people who love him, who are eager and enthusiastic to please and glorify him, who desire to live for his glory and who, through the miracle of regeneration, are new creatures in Christ. Those who are still the slaves of sin deny and make void the blessings of his redemption.

Titus 2:15. ‘Titus,’ (and every teacher), ‘tell them all these things! Urge believers; advise, warn and rebuke with the full authority of the gospel. Let no man despise you because you neglected your responsibility or performed it in an unkind way. Let no man despise you because you were faithful to his soul in rebuking his sin. Let not the fact that some will despise you keep you from claiming authority and respect in teaching these things.’

 


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Bibliography Information
Mahan, Henry. "Commentary on Titus 2:4". Henry Mahan's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hms/titus-2.html. 2013.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020
the First Week of Advent
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