Teaching and Being Taught
Verse 7 In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness.
Yesterday we were talking about the importance of the community of faith in our spiritual growth. We were reminded that to learn from each other we need to have a humble heart and spirit. Today we look at the lists that Paul was giving to Titus so he could teach the Church how to maintain a growing depth of our spiritual lives. Remember that just because some of these qualities are only addressed to one specific group doesn’t mean that the rest of us are exempt from needing these attributes which reveal a life dedicated to God.
The first list addresses the older men. Notice it says to teach the older men. This shows that a Christian never grows to an age where they are excused from furthering their knowledge of God and His desires for our lives. These men are to be taught how to be self-controlled, how to be worthy of respect, how to be sound in their faith and taught these things in love and endurance. Isn’t that interesting? Jewish men were used to gaining respect as they aged just because they were aging but Paul was saying that isn’t how it was to be in the Christian Church. These men were to be learning how to be worthy of respect. They also needed to learn how to be sound in the faith. Being sound in our faith isn’t something that just happens through growing older. No, it has to be learned.
The next lists speak to the women – both old and young. Older women also need to be taught. They need to learn to live in a way that honors God, not to be gossips, nor should they learn to rely on wine to get them through. But notice the last thing on the list – they are to be taught how to teach others what is good. Teach who? Well, for one they are to teach the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be good housekeepers, how to be kind, and how to be submissive to their husbands (notice this is in addition to loving their husbands). Why? So that no one will bring shame to the Word of God. Did you catch that?
Now on to the young man’s list. First they need to be encouraged to be self-controlled. And how was it to be encouraged? By living it in front of them. They were also to teach them by living integrity, seriousness (this doesn’t mean they are to be dull and joyless) and soundness of speech that can’t be condemned. Why? Because even their enemies wouldn’t be able to find anything bad to say about them.
This is when lives can be seen as true worship and God is glorified with even His enemies taking notice.
Making It Personal
Which items on the list do you need to work on? Has anyone ever come aside you and tried teaching you? Have you humbly accepted their guidance?
Making It Personal Kids
Paul said we all need someone to help us learn to be more like Jesus; if you could choose someone who would you choose? Do you know that Jesus wants you to help others know how life like Him? Who can you help learn about Jesus and His ways?
Father, thank You for loving us so much that You placed us in communities to learn from and to pass on knowledge of You to. Please help us grow more like You so that the world can see You. In Jesus’ name, amen.