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Submitting to God's Word in light of contemporary challenges to our faith.
The need to be self-consciously gospel-centered is exactly what was being threatened in the Cretan churches. In 1:5-16, Paul explains why Titus’ appointment of qualified leadership (vv. 5-9) and opposition to unqualified leadership (vv. 10-16) in the Cretan churches is so important, namely because there are many false teachers in Crete turning people away from the centrality of the gospel (1:11, 14). In order to help Titus and the churches recognize and oppose ungodly leadership, Paul gives 12 characteristics of false teachers and 2 action steps to take in order to prevent them from harming the church.
Titus 1:9 Session 1 of 3 in the Feasting, Feeding, and Fighting of a Mature Man
Primary Claim: The effective prayers of followers of Christ have great poser in the world.
To aid Titus and the Cretan churches in appointing qualified elders so that the churches are properly ordered, Paul, in vv. 6-9, sets forth three areas where an elder must be “above reproach.” The three areas where a prospective elder must be free of a damaging accusation are his family life, personal life and doctrinal life. In v. 9, Paul sets forth the most important qualification, namely an elder must be above reproach in his doctrinal life.
To aid Titus and the Cretan churches in appointing qualified elders so that the churches are properly ordered, Paul, in vv. 6-9, sets forth three areas where an elder must be “above reproach.” The three areas where a prospective elder must be free of a damaging accusation are his family life, personal life and doctrinal life. The first area a prospective elder must be above reproach is in his family life. He must be the husband of one wife and have faithful children. Second, an elder must not only be able to manage his own marriage and family well (1:6) but he must also be able to manage himself well. Therefore, in vv. 7-8, Paul lists five sinful vices and six godly virtues, which define what it means for an elder to be “above reproach” in his personal life. These eleven qualities, which are evidence of God's transforming grace, are essential to fitness for oversight of God's household.
Approving elders Todd Brand, Stephen Cossey, Phillip Hunter, Dale Nowlin, Greg Shuster, Mark Thom & Joe Brooks.
More on the Elder-Pastor-Overseers
Paul knew that Titus needed the authority to rightly order the churches. Therefore, Paul sets forth his apostleship as an authoritative model of gospel-driven ministry in order to assist Titus in setting the churches in order. He gives 4 characteristics of a gospel-driven ministry. The first characteristic is that a gospel-driven ministry is devoted to the service of the gospel (1:1a-b). Second, a gospel-driven ministry is devoted to the goals of the gospel (i.e., faith, knowledge, godliness, hope). Third, a gospel-driven ministry is devoted to the proclamation of the gospel (1:3b-c). Fourth, a gospel-driven ministry is devoted to passing on the gospel (1:4).