Paul’s Letter to Titus – Titus 1-3

It seems clear that Paul wrote this letter to Titus sometime between the first and second letters to Timothy — before his final imprisonment. In the first chapter, we find that Paul has been to Crete, where he left Titus to help appoint some elders in the towns where they had established churches. this chapter again lists the qualification elders should have, which (not surprisingly) pretty much mirror those listed in 1 Timothy. The reason for the urgency in establishing elders all around is that Paul is aware that there are false teachers there, and he warns Titus to be prepared.

Sometimes known as Candia, Bible-time Crete is a large island in the Mediterranean Sea, about 150 miles long and 50 miles wide. The ship carrying Paul to Rome passed along the southern coast of Crete, where it encountered a storm (Acts 27: 7-11). People of Crete were among those at Pentecost (Acts 2: 11). Between Paul's first and second imprisonments, he and Titus visited Crete (Titus 1: 5). Tradition says that Titus was bishop of Crete and that he died there in his old age. In one ancient writing, Titus is called Bishop of Gortyna. Paul's letter to Titus talks about the conditions on Crete. A village near Ionion.

Sometimes known as Candia, Bible-time Crete is a large island in the Mediterranean Sea, about 150 miles long and 50 miles wide. The ship carrying Paul to Rome passed along the southern coast of Crete, where it encountered a storm (Acts 27: 7-11). People of Crete were among those at Pentecost (Acts 2: 11). Between Paul’s first and second imprisonments, he and Titus visited Crete (Titus 1: 5). Tradition says that Titus was bishop of Crete and that he died there in his old age. In one ancient writing, Titus is called Bishop of Gortyna. Paul’s letter to Titus talks about the conditions on Crete. A village near Ionion.

In the second chapter, he also advises the young preacher on preaching sound doctrine, conducting himself as a good example, and encouraging the young men to do so as well. He speaks of the importance of the influence of the older women, and even admonishes bondservants about “showing good faith so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior.

In chapter 3, Paul tells Titus to remind everyone to submit to the authorities and be obedient. He also stresses that they should not be quarrelsome, particularly where the law is concerned. It would seem here that he is speaking of the law of Moses, as he mentions it in the context of arguing about genealogies. He finishes the letter telling Titus to come to him in Nicopolis (Greece), where he has decided to spend the winter.

/Bob’s boy

Bible Reading Schedule for this month
Click links below to read or listen to audio of one of this week’s chapters in Colossians and Luke

Titus 1, Titus 2, Titus 3, Philemon, Jude

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some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

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All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.

 

 

 

 

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With All Authority – Paul’s Epistle to Titus

Paul’s authorship of the letter to Titus has been questioned by a few scholars, largely because of the mention of having been on the island of Crete, when there is no other scriptural record of Paul having visited the island. But of course, the Bible is neither the biography of Paul, nor is it his journal. In truth, it is plain to see that Paul wrote this letter after he wrote his first letter to Timothy and before his second letter to him, which he wrote from his final imprisonment in Rome, while awaiting his death. By bits and pieces, we at least get a partial picture of Paul’s travels after his first imprisonment there.

Tradition says that after Paul was released from prison in Rome (before his second and final imprisonment), he and Titus traveled together for a while. They stopped in Crete, and when it was time for Paul to go, he left Titus behind to help the churches there.

Tradition says that after Paul was released from prison in Rome (before his second and final imprisonment), he and Titus traveled together for a while. They stopped in Crete, and when it was time for Paul to go, he left Titus behind to help the churches there.

Crete is one of the five largest islands in the Mediterranean, only about 1/3 the size of Sicily and Sardinia, but it is the largest of the Greek islands. It is about 160 miles from east to west, and about 37 miles at its widest point. From the familiarity that Paul clearly has with the island and its people (as expressed in this letter) he must have spent considerable time there, before leaving Titus with a charge to nurture the fledgling congregations there.

Among the things that Paul has to say to Titus here is to urge him to set about the work of “what remained” to be put in order, including the appointment of elders in every town. Just how many towns were involved in this effort, we do not know. Paul also lists some important qualifications for those who would be considered for that task (Titus 1:5-9). One reason for the urgency was that Paul expressed some concern about the problem of false teachers, including those of the circumcision party that had made their way even to the island already.

With respect to those false teachers and the “deceivers,” Paul tells Titus to be firm in teaching the truth while dealing with such matters. In chapter 2:15, he tells him to “exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.” In chapter 3, he concludes the letter with good advice for living as a Christian, and avoiding controversy and dissensions. He asks Titus to do his best to come to Nicopolis, where Paul says he plans to spend the winter. It is unclear which Nicopolis he referred to, but it could have been Actia Nicopolis, of western Greece. It was once the capital of the Roman province of Epirus Vetus.

(This year’s reading plan for Luke, Acts, and 1 and 2 Chronicles averages just 15 verses per day – 5 days per week!)
Schedule for this week

 

/Bob’s boy

 

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some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

 

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com.

 

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