During Paul’s first missionary journey, the Lord ordained for him to come to know a young man named Titus. Titus was Greek, which means he had not grown up worshiping the God of the Bible. As he heard Paul preach, God gave Titus a heart to see the gospel and respond with saving faith in Jesus. Paul then brought Titus to Jerusalem (Galatians 2:1-4) to show the apostles and other Jewish believers how a Greek could love God just as much as the Jews did. Titus represented all the other non-Jewish people who became Christians and were completely accepted by God through their faith in Jesus Christ. This is like us today.
Titus continued to travel with Paul on missionary journeys, helping in the work of sharing the gospel. Titus was with Paul during the three years Paul was in Ephesus, teaching them about the awesome power of God and the life-changing gospel. After this, Paul sent Titus to Corinth to help relieve tension there (2 Corinthians 7:6; 13-14) and to collect money for the poor (2 Corinthians 8:6, 16, 23). Paul not only thought of Titus as a very faithful friend but also as his spiritual son.
After Paul was released from the Roman prison where he had been for two years, he and Titus traveled to the island of Crete. Paul and Titus taught the people there about their need for God and the good news about Jesus (Titus 1:4-5). Soon there were enough believers to start churches in several towns. Paul wanted to go visit the church in Corinth, so he left Titus to continue teaching the new Christians and to appoint church leaders for each new church. Titus was a busy man, as he cared for all the new Cretan believers, especially because the people just didn’t know how to do what is good in God’s eyes.
Paul knew Titus needed some encouragement and reminders of what was important to teach the people. So, Paul wrote to Titus soon after writing 1 Timothy, probably while Paul was in Macedonia on his way to Nicopolis (Titus 3:12). In his letter, Paul advised Titus regarding what qualifications to look for in leaders for the church. He also warned Titus of the reputations of those living on the island of Crete (Titus 1:12).
In Titus 3:3-6, Paul reminds Titus, “At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior.”
How awesome it must have been when Titus received a letter from his mentor, the apostle Paul. Paul was a much-honored man, and rightly so, after establishing several churches throughout the eastern world. His instruction and gospel re-orientation must have proven to be essential for Titus’s maturing in the Lord. We must never forget to use the word and gospel truth regularly when speaking to each other, that we too might lift each other up in Christ and encourage each other to press on in all that we face for our King.
To help Titus continue in his faith in Christ, Paul asked Titus to come to Nicopolis and bring with him two other members of the church (Titus 3:12-13). It is these kinds of Christ-centered discipleship relationships we are to be in today: life on life, training, encouraging, sending, and multiplying. May all of our study through these 52 figures of the Holy Scriptures be an inspiration to us to obey God, serve Him sacrificially, to not walk alone but in accountability, and to make the most of the days God has entrusted to us for His glory and others’ good.
I look forward to this next year’s reading plan, as we will be focusing on spiritual disciplines that will help us to mature in our faith and grow in our dependence on and worship of the Lord. We will also we reading through the book of Proverbs throughout the year as a break from the disciplines and to give us a great source of biblical wisdom. Please don’t hesitate to share our SFJbible.com reading plan with anyone you are walking with or ministering to. It is a great way to be in the word of God together. I am praying for you as you study God’s holy word and commit your life to obeying His revealed will.
By His grace and for His glory,
Soldiers for Jesus MC