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Bible Commentaries

Ironside's Notes on Selected Books
Titus 2

 

 


Verses 1-15

Chapter 3

Godliness in the Home

Titus 2:1-15

But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: that the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; that they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. In all things showing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine showing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, 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. Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; not purloining, but showing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things. For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee. (vv. 1-15)

Passing from the question of the church, the epistle takes up godliness in the home. Titus is exhorted to speak the things that are in accord with the sound doctrine, or really “the healthful teaching,” and in so doing he should counsel the various members of the Christian society. There is a message for aged men and women, young men and women, and also servants.

It is not, however, as in Ephesians and Colossians, a direct exhortation addressed to each of these classes. On the contrary, Titus is instructed as to his own line of procedure to help these various persons to walk consistently with their profession.

The aged men were to be so taught that they would be characterized by sobriety, gravity, self-control, soundness in the faith, love, and patience. The aged women were to walk in accordance with their holy profession, being especially warned against a wrong use of the tongue-“not false accusers.” The word is the same as employed for the Devil himself. He is preeminently the slanderer. What a sad thing when Christians so forget their high and holy calling as to be slanderers one of another, thus giving place to the Devil! The aged women are not to become self-indulgent, but to teach, by example as well as precept, those who are younger.

Observe that Titus is not told to instruct the young women personally in regard to their behavior. That might not always be discreet and might compromise him as a servant of Christ. He is to address himself to the aged women and they are to “train” the younger. The word translated teach in verse 4 is really “train.” The young women are to be trained in sobriety. They are to be taught to love their husbands and their children, and be discreet, chaste, keepers at home. It is really “workers at home”; idleness is not conducive to holiness. They are to be good, or kind, subject to their own husbands, that the Word of God be not blasphemed.

To the young men Titus may address himself directly. He is to exhort them to be sober-minded, but at the same time careful to set an example in all things.

Men will forgive a preacher if he is not eloquent or highly cultured. They will forgive him if he lacks in personal attractiveness or even in wisdom, but they will never forgive him if he is insincere. He who handles holy things must himself live in the power of them. His speech, too, is to be as sound as his life and teaching, in order that those opposed to him may be put to shame when, like the enemies of Daniel, they can find no evil thing to say against him.

In the Revised Version we have “us” instead of “you” at the close of the eighth verse, which might imply that the behavior of Christians would close the mouths of those who desire to find fault with the servants of Christ, through whom they had been led to make a Christian profession.

In verses 9-10 we have the behavior of Christian servants. They are to be obedient to their own masters, to seek to please them well, not answering again, not purloining nor pilfering what is not rightfully their own, but on the other hand showing all good fidelity that thus they may reflect credit on the truth they profess. Integrity and trustworthiness in the little details of their service will glorify the One whose bondmen they really are.

It is to this that we have all been called, as is shown in verses 11-15, “The grace of God, [salvation bringing for all men], hath appeared.” A divine message sent from heaven to earth, showing not only that Christ saves us, but teaching us that denying, or refusing, ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously and piously in this present world, “looking for that blessed hope, and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ.” This last expression should be translated in this way, according to the judgment of many sober authorities. He is our great God, and it is He who became in grace our Savior.

It is the return of the Lord that is thus put before us to influence our daily lives. It is one thing to hold the doctrine of the Lord’s return, but quite another to be held by that blessed hope.

These things Titus is to speak, exhort, and rebuke with all authority.

 


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Bibliography Information
Ironside, H. A. "Commentary on Titus 2:4". Ironside's Notes on Selected Books. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/isn/titus-2.html. 1914.

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Friday, December 4th, 2020
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