Titus Chapter One (Part Three)

Introduction: A key idea in Titus is to stay focused on God’s will. Today, we hope to discuss offenders in the church.

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Body:

Read Titus 1:10-16

III. Offenders In The Church. Paul warns Titus that there are many people who are known for being rebellious and deceivers, especially those who have been circumcised (i.e., Jewish background).

Paul says they must be silenced because of the harm that they are doing. Rebuke is the method of silencing. They are unfit for doing anything good, in their current status.

Applications -

- Troublemakers. Notice in Titus vss. 10, 12-13 that there were and are many religious people in and around the church who cause trouble. They teach things that should not be taught. They are deceivers. They have ungodly motives like dishonest gain.

First, we should make sure we don’t let the devil use us to be one of these troublemakers. The devil likes to use people in and around the church who others may listen to.

Second, we should be aware that everybody in church is not saved and trying to live for Jesus. The devil may be using the person who we look up to.

Let’s work on keeping the devil from using us and discerning who the devil is using. At the core of this application is prayerfully studying and obeying God’s word with the support of other disciples. Without the word, we are easy pickings for the devil.

- Being deceived. Notice in Titus vs. 11 that the troublemakers must be silenced because of the harm that they cause. It is one thing to know that there are troublemakers but it is another to know that they are being effective.

Let’s make sure we are not a part of those being deceived by troublemakers. Anyone who cannot line up with God’s word and will for our church should not be allowed to cause trouble.

The reason the Pastor reviews the principles and vision of our church so often is so no one can say “I don’t know.” Sometimes we allow demonic ignorance to lead to our getting in trouble with God.

- Rebuke. Notice in vss. 13-14 that sharp rebuke is a method of dealing with troublemakers. There are times to be nice and patient. But there are other times to be strong and to rebuke sharply.

The Pastor has to be able to do more than teach the babies. He/she must be able to rebuke those who are causing trouble. Let’s pray for the Pastor’s discernment and strength.

Pray for the Pastor to rebuke those who need it and teach those who need it, instead of wasting time and energy rebuking those who need to be taught and teaching those who need to be rebuked.

When the Pastor is wasting energy on the wrong action, it means he/she is not focused on taking care of the sheep. Distracting the shepherd has a negative impact on the sheep.

- A sinful heart’s impact. Notice in vss. 15-16 the idea that a sinful heart disturbs everything. When your heart and mind are not in line with God’s word and will then you are all messed up. You think everyone else is wrong. You will say one thing but do another.

Let’s work on being what God is calling us to be.  As we strive to do this, we should develop relationships with other disciples to help us see parts of us that we would not normally see. Having accountability partners and prayer partners can be very helpful in staying focused on God’s will. 

- Not fit for office. Notice in vs. 16 that if a person is not acting right and giving evidence to not being a mature Christian then they are not fit for doing anything good. Surely this includes them not being fit for church leadership positions.

Let’s make sure we restrict leadership roles to those who demonstrate Christian character and competencies. Neither age, seniority, popularity, nor social status should be the determining factors in selecting and allowing people to serve as leaders.

Fishers of fish with Christian character and competencies are more useful than Pharisees and scribes who lack Christian character and competencies.

Conclusion: Let’s work on staying focused on God’s will. God has much for those who obey His will.

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