Titus

 
THE EPISTLE OF PAUL TO
TITUS
 
 
O U T L I N E
– Salutation Titus 1:1-4
– The Writer and His Apostleship Titus 1:1-3
– The Recipient and His Relationship to Paul Titus 1:4
– The Need for Order and Good Behavior Titus 1:5-16
– Titus’ Mission in Crete: to Establish Order Titus 1:5-9
– Aside: The Cultural Backdrop of the Cretan Assembly Titus 1:10-16
– Behavior in Our Individual Stations Titus 2
– Instructions for Believers in Various Stations of Life Titus 2:1-10
– Aside: Motivation for Good Conduct Titus 2:11-14
– Titus’ Charge Continued Titus 2:15
– Behavior Before the World Titus 3:1-7
– Good Conduct before the World Titus 3:1-2
– Aside: Why We are Different from the World Titus 3:3-7
– Conclusion Titus 3:8-15
– Profitable and Unprofitable Ministry Titus 3:8-11
– Final Instructions and Salutation Titus 3:12-15
 
Titus. Titus was a brother, a converted Greek, in the early church who was a companion and delegate of the Apostle Paul. Paul refers to Titus as “mine own son after the common faith” (Titus 1:4). Titus does not appear in the book of Acts, but his names comes up in the epistles of Paul. We read first of Titus in Galatians 2, where Paul took Titus with him up to Jerusalem for the council (which is the same incident we get in Acts 15:1-35). The point is noted by Paul that Titus was not circumcised, which makes Titus an interesting contrast to Timothy.1 We gather from 2 Corinthians that Paul dispatched Titus and another brother from Ephesus to Corinth with the first epistle (1 Cor. 16:8; 2 Cor. 12:18). Paul moved a little closer to Corinth, stopping at Troas, but Paul had no rest in spirit because Titus had not come with news from Corinth (2 Cor. 2:12-13). After spending a little time there in Troas, Paul arrived in Macedonia. It was in Macedonia that Titus came to Paul with good news, that the Corinthians had received the first epistle, and were repentant (2 Cor. 7:5-7). Therefore, Paul wrote the second epistle, his heart now free for him to express himself, and he sent the second epistle again by the hand of Titus. We read nothing else of Titus until epistle written to him, in which we learn that Paul left Titus in the island of Crete to set in order things that were lacking, and then send the epistle with more detailed instructions. The last we read of Titus is in 2 Timothy 4:10, where having apparently finished his work in Crete, Titus had departed to Dalmatia, most likely on some mission.
 
Historical Note. It would appear that Paul, after being placed under house-arrest for two years in Rome (Acts 28), was later allowed to make another missionary journey under some level of supervision. Read more… On this fourth journey Paul passed through the island of Crete, and left Titus there to set things in order. It was later on this fourth journey that Paul wrote the epistle to Titus, probably around the same time as he wrote 1 Timothy, from somewhere in Macedonia. Timothy was left in Ephesus on the same journey, for a similar purpose. This would place the epistle to Titus somewhere around AD 64. 
 
Pastoral Epistles. The pastoral epistles are those that give Divine instruction to individuals in various circumstances. These epistles tend to be more personal than those to the saints collectively, and more practical as well. They are written usually much later, after the doctrine of the Church has already been laid down. Although it is a pastoral epistle, the character of Titus is somewhat less personal than the epistles to Timothy and Philemon.
 
Overview of the Epistle. The purpose of the epistle to Titus was to aid Titus is his mission of setting in order that which was lacking is the assemblies of Crete (Tit. 1:5). The epistle contains detailed instructions for the behavior of Christians in their individual walk, in relationships with each other, and also before the world and civil authorities. Also in this epistle, alongside the detailed instructions for Christian behavior, are the motivations for that behavior. God not only tells us how to walk right, but gives us reasons why!
 
  1. The reason why Paul had Timothy circumcised and not Titus is given to us; "because of the Jews which were in those quarters: for they knew all that his father was a Greek" (Acts 16:3). The issue with Timothy was that one parent was Jewish and the other Gentile, and so it would raise distracting questions about his ethnicity among the Jews. Paul used his Christian liberty, so that "unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law" (1 Cor. 9:20). Paul did not compromised his principles with Timothy, but had rather used his Christian liberty bring an end to any distraction over the issue. What the Jews wanted was to reject Timothy because of his mixed background, so Paul had him circumcised! The case of Titus (Gal. 2:3), whom Paul did not compel to be circumcised, made Paul's position very clear. Titus did not pose the same issue. Both the parents of Titus were Gentiles, and Paul would not compel him to take up with Jewish ceremony. To do so would be a compromise of principles!