Daily Devotion in Titus 2
In giving pastoral advice to another preacher, Titus, Paul shows us we can often face what the early church had to be careful of. Churches had to be careful of false teachers undermining the work of God
Paul’s warnings to Titus can help us identify some of the false preaching and teaching that go on in pulpits today. Some of the tell-tale signs of a “false preacher” include:
- They are preaching things that should not be preached or taught. Perhaps some of what came from the pulpit was not even biblical, as happens in many pulpits today. Somehow what was said was often motivated by the preacher’s desire just to make more money for himself (Titus 1:11).
- Much of what was said ruined families. Perhaps unwise preaching brought division rather than unity in families and caused problems (Titus 1:11). It may also have been doctrines that encouraged families to leave their church. The result was that they stopped attending church altogether.
- Their having their own prophets (Titus 1:12) that supposedly got a “new message from God” and added their thoughts and philosophies. Today, we see this with Muslims following the teaching of their prophet, Mohammed, and the Mormons following their “prophet," Joseph Smith. It also is seen in other religions and denominations across the world.
- Their teaching of “fables, and commandments of men” (Titus 1:14). Instead of “thus saith the Lord,” it was “thus saith the preacher” or “thus saith our religion.” Today, we see this with many false religions having their own religious books and teachings that receive more credence than the Word of God.
- Their works proved they were not from God (Titus 1:16). They claimed they were from God with their mouth, but their involvement in sin and ungodly actions was contrary to their profession.
Many claim that they will not “judge” others, and we should not. However, we must discern right from wrong and keep far away from what God does not approve of. False religion is one danger we need to recognize as not being of God. It must be avoided before damage is done to our thinking, testimony, and our Christian walk.
“There are only two types of religions: those that “do” to get God to overlook their sin or those that know that their sins were paid for when Jesus died on the cross.”
Words to Understand:
Subvert: to ruin; corrupt; overturn
Temperate: moderate; self-restrained.
1 Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;
2 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;
3 But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour;
4 To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour.
5 ¶ For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:
6 ¶ If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.
7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;
8 But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate;
9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
10 For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision:
11 Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake.
12 One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.
13 This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;
14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.
15 Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.
16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.