“Trouble-Shooting With Titus”
“Wholesome Doctrine” (Titus 2:1)
We continue on the subject of sound doctrine v1. There is in this wholesome, healthy teaching the power element to consider. The practical energy we need for everyday Christian living. The good news about Jesus Christ is propositional, undoubtedly so. But it is when embraced by faith life-giving. But the doctrine and the life must not be separated, not without causing harm. “Teach thou thing things which ‘become’ sound doctrine” v1. Good preaching itself is not enough, for this sound teaching must become the very warp and woof of the Christian’s life, the fabric of their beings. There is never an excuse for a lack of grace. We are saved by faith , that is a right belief, in Christ, but if that does not produce a work of grace, something is amiss.
The grace of humility, purity and honesty for example are basic to new-born soul, but such is absent we must conclude that the faith being professed is dead (James 2:14-26). It is life lived that is “becoming” to sound doctrine that has the power, the energy to silence, prevent evil slander against the church v8. We are challenged here to make the gospel powerfully attractive v10; Matthew 5:16). It is right, sound, wholesome doctrine that leads to right, wholesome living. The first, the doctrine provides the motive, the driving power for the second, the good living. This undercuts the foolishness, the error of those who claim, because we will never get total agreement on doctrine, let us just concentrate on acting together. We live in a world that thrives upon lies and half-truths. The sound doctrine Paul advocates here, good, clean and wholesome and producing lives lived in accord with such, are the truth and light the people of this age need to see (Titus 1:1).
(© James R Hamilton, written September, 1998)