“Trouble-Shooting With Titus”
“His Character” 1:7-8
This man is called to be a steward of the affairs of God, and so must be of blameless character. If there is a character flaw then he will simply cast a dispersion upon the gospel, God’s name and cause (Romans 2:24). Paul here lists five negatives and seven positives. An elder is dealing with people, not things, who can be stupid, stubborn, perverse even at times. The task calls for all the qualities of a tender shepherd. If he is arrogant, over-bearing, self-willed, quick-tempered, hot-headed, he will cause more rebellion and problems than needed. He is a man who perhaps needs to continually remind himself of how patient the Lord has been to him. But this man will be recognised by the congregation. He will stand out, head and shoulders above the other men in the church.
His devotion and care for the good others will be noticed v8. Alas, where will Titus, and we too for that matter, find such a calibre of men? Well Paul expects that through the preaching of the gospel, the ministry of the word, that men will be converted. And that they will grow in grace quickly to such stature. If men are truly born of the Spirit, washed in the Saviour’s blood, will not the fruit of the Spirit be evidenced in them (Galatians 5:22-24)? Perhaps our problem today is we expect far too little of our people, our standards are way to low. We molly coddle folk, but then we have to, to keep them in the church. Perhaps the problem goes back further than that, maybe they have never truly been born-again, converted?
(© James R Hamilton, written September, 1998)