In our recent gospel meeting with Bill Steward, he made this statement more than once. He would never say no to a work of serving the Lord. He took the can’t out of his vocabulary. As we view our Christian walk here on this earth, how many times have we said I can’t? I am reminded of Jesus’ words when He spoke about the men with ten, five, and one talent. Matthew 25:14-30 The words of the men with ten and five said, “I can” the man with one said “I can’t.” Would Jesus have been happy with the one talent man if he had said I can? I believe our Savior would had been very pleased with him. All of us start out the same way, as little babies. Now I know not all have the same abilities but we all have gifts that God has blessed us with. You never can have that second talent until you have used the first one, we build on talent after talent.
How many of us have abilities that are still hidden because the can’t word is in our mind? Would it not be easier to say I can do this? It may be something very small in nature but can bring great results. Some of us remember Hildred. There was not much she could do with the body she had but she always did what she could with a smile. We all remember the cards that we got from her. She would smile at you and say it’s alright, even though she was in real pain most of the time. She said, “I can.” Last Sunday evening three young men came to me and said they can pull weeds. It is a start in their life of putting I can in their mind set. A saying that came to my mind from a person of great importance to me was, “can’t never did nothing.”
The words that come through the inspirited Word says in Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Now Paul made this statement in every condition he was in, good or bad, which in most cases were bad. There were many trials along the way but Paul put his trust in the Lord and said I can do it.
In the past weeks we have written about older Christian men and women and then of younger Christian women. In Titus 2:6-7 Paul’s writing to Titus give the example of how younger Christian men are to live their lives so that God will be glorified. Although it is addressed to Titus, it still applies to all younger Christian men. Titus 2:6-8. Likewise urge the young men to be sensible; in all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, so that the opponent will be put to shame, having nothing bad to say about us.
Young Christian men need to be sober minded just like young Christian women. Sober minded means to be discreet and sensible. It means to be of sound mind. They are to live and deal with the fact that one day they will answer to God for the lives they have lived. Titus and young Christian men are to be good examples of Christian living. Paul mentions some things that should be characterized by Titus and these young Christian men. Christians must live what they preach. Titus is to set the example for these young men and others as well. Titus must always have pure motives as he teaches and preaches.
Titus must have dignity as he preaches. Dignity recognizes the responsibility one has to be a messenger for God. He must not be petty, must not hold grudges, must have no bitterness and must treat others as a Christian should, regardless of the way they act toward him or others. Matt 7:12.
In sound doctrine means he must have a sound message. He must not pollute the word of God by adding to it or by taking away from it. The gospel can do its work if it is kept pure.
Sound speech means Titus and young Christian men must speak the truth in love. They must preach plainly so they are not misunderstood. All must live what they preach.
We are very blessed to have younger Christian men in Ripon who do their very best to follow the instructions that Paul gave to Titus.
Titus list four things that our older Christians ladies should have in their lives as servants of our Lord. Titus 2:3-5. “Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.”
Reverent in behavior means living the Christian life as a Christian woman ought to live life. She is to live in view of the fact that God is watching and one day she will give her account for her life. The influence of all the Christian women upon the church, upon the family and upon the community cannot be over emphasize and should not be underestimated.
Not malicious gossip means they should not spread malicious gossip. The word of God has a lot to say about the tongue and speaking, Paul teaches Christians to put away falsehood and to speak truth to the neighbors. Ephesians 4:25. It seems so easy to talk evil about others however the Christian must be guided by love. When older Christian women speak to younger Christian women, it should be tempered with kindness. Too often words are spoken with unkindness, words that hurt the young Christian. These unkind words have been spoken here in Ripon. When Jesus was at the Passover with his apostles and giving instruction about the Lord’s Supper there was talk among the twelve as to who was going to betray Him, In Mark 14:19 it says They began to be grieved and to say to Him one by one, “Surely not I?” Matthew 7:12 Paul makes it very plain when he says, “speak no evil of men” Titus 3:2
Not enslaved to much wine means not to be slaves of strong drink. The teaching of the Bible is to abstain from strong drink. Read first Timothy 3:8 and 5:23 Proverbs 23: 20-21 and 29-35. Teachers of that which is good means older women are to be teachers of those characteristics that become a godly woman. Young Christian women are to teach their children. Older Christians women are to teach the younger woman to love their husbands and children.
When Paul starts this letter to Titus, what a great message he has given to us all. It is inspired from God on how we are to live our lives. What a great blessing it is, that we know how to live our lives according to God. So far, we talked about older men and older Christian women. Now it is younger women that we will talk about. In Ripon we have caring, loving and wonderful younger Christian women. We are blessed.
Titus 2:3-5 Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
Young Christian women need to be trained to love their husbands. Love is more than just a good feeling about someone. Love is a commitment and when she gets married, she makes a vowel in the sight of God to be faithful and true in sickness as well as in health, in joy as well as sorrow. Hardships as well as in prosperity, love is not selfish. She must ask herself what can I do for my husband.
Young Christian mothers need to be taught to love their children. One of the greatest responsibilities of motherhood is to bring your children up in the way of education and council that the Lord approves. Ephesians 6:4 and 1 Timothy 2:15. Christian women who have reared their children to be faithful Christians have much to teach to the young Christian mothers.
To be sensible means discreet and a woman of sound mind. She is not swayed by sudden impulses. The sensible woman is ready and willing to learn.
Pure means she is committed to be faithful and true to her husband in body, mind and spirit.
Worker at home means she takes care of her responsibilities at home. Her first duty is to God. A part of one's commitment to God means to be a good wife and a good mother. She must not let other good works interfere with her commitment to her home.
Kindness is part of love. Love is kind 1 Cor 13:5. As a wife takes care of her many duties and responsibilities at home, she must be kind.
Subject to their own husbands means to honor her husband. When a Christian wife does not live up to God's commands, she brings reproach upon the Lord. When people see this, they talk evil of God.
In chapter two of Titus, the start of this chapter deals with older Christian men. The responsibility of these men is to teach wholesome doctrine. Paul writes this message to Titus concerning older men. Titus 2:1 “But as for you, speaking things which are fitting for sound doctrine.” False teachers were teaching a perverted Gospel. Titus was to teach the pure Gospel. The gospel truth is known as sound doctrine. Titus is not only to correct false doctrine, he is to teach the true teachings of God. In a corrupt world, Christians are to be different. Paul instructs Titus what to teach the various age groups.
Titus 2:2 “Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance.” Aged men means men considered to be above fifty years of age. Paul lists six things which should characterize older Christian men.
Temperate means sober. He does not go to extremes. Older men should know the value of life. Older men should know that the pleasures of self-indulgence costs far more than they are worth.
Dignified means serious, worthy of respect. Older Christian men should realize that living is serious business. The way one lives will determine where he spends eternity. In view of the fact that man must give account of his life, he lives life seriously.
Sensible Means self-controlled, thoughtful. This man has everything under control. This is the man who does what he ought to do and this is the man who refrains from doing the things he ought not do.
Sound in Faith means he has a healthy faith. Sound is a medical term which means healthy. His faith should be neither lukewarm nor mixed with error. True faith involves believing in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, trusting in God and obeying God.
In Love means he has a healthy love. A Christian should love God more every year as he serves God and lives for Him. As some people grow older, they drift into criticism and faultfinding. However, the older Christian men should have more tolerance and sympathy for others as they struggle with life’s issues.
Perseverance means one is steadfast, endures, is strong. The trials and tribulations of life should temper a man like steel. The older Christian ought to be able to bear more and more. As one grows weaker in his physical body, he should grow stronger in faith. II Corinthians 4:16, “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.”
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