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Home » Daily Readings, New Testament Writers

Sound Doctrine and Good Example

Submitted by on Tuesday, 11 November 2008No Comment
  • Reading I: Titus 2:1-8.11-14
  • Resp. Psalm: Psalm 37:3-4,18 and 23, 27 and 29
  • Gospel Reading: Luke 17:7-10

Crete

"Sound doctrine" is here used in its more original connotation, not as a set of teachings to know, but as teachings to live by (see the use of "training" in v. 12). In other words, "doctrine" means "formation" here and is geared towards ethical behavior in consonance with the Christian’s status as a member of the people purchased by Christ, "his own" (v. 14), those He considers at the top of his value system.

But "sound doctrine" is not enough as Paul also admonishes Titus to be a good example.  In Crete especially where ""Cretans have always been liars, vicious beasts, and lazy gluttons. (Titus 1:12)" and the presence of "enemies" 1 who need to be silenced, Paul’s remedy are blameless and exemplary priests and bishops who are also orthodox (see 1:6-9).

The theological motivation given is found in verses 11-14:  Jesus Christ has given himself up for us, that we may become a people, His own, cleansed (in His blood)  and delivered from lawlessness, eager to do good.  It is the lifestyle of this people to await the coming of their Lord in blamelessness, rejecting "godless ways and worldly desires and to live temperately, justly, and devoutly in this age."  Hence, Titus’s work of forming the Cretan Christians while himself living under the same ideals.  For the such ideals come with the acceptance of the Word of God which forms all Christians into the people of the Lord.

A sentence flow of Titus 2:1-14 is found here.

Titus 2:1-8
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg Greek
1But speak thou the things that become sound doctrine:
2That the aged men be sober, chaste, prudent, sound in faith, in love, in patience.
3The aged women, in like manner, in holy attire, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teaching well:
4That they may teach the young women to be wise, to love their husbands, to love their children,
5To be discreet, chaste, sober, having a care of the house, gentle, obedient to their husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
6Young men, in like manner, exhort that they be sober.
7In all things shew thyself an example of good works, in doctrine, in integrity, in gravity,
8The sound word that can not be blamed: that he, who is on the contrary part, may be afraid, having no evil to say of us.
Psalm 37:3-4,18
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg LXX Hebrew
3Trust in the Lord, and do good, and dwell in the land, and thou shalt be fed with its riches.
4Delight in the Lord, and he will give thee the requests of thy heart.
18The Lord knoweth the days of undefiled; and their inheritance shall be for ever.
Luke 17:7-10
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7But which of you having a servant ploughing, or feeding cattle, will say to him, when he is come from the field: Immediately go, sit down to meat:
8And will not rather say to him: Make ready my supper, and gird thyself, and serve me, whilst I eat and drink, and afterwards thou shalt eat and drink?
9Doth he thank that servant, for doing the things which he commanded him?
10I think not. So you also, when you shall have done all these things that are commanded you, say: We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which we ought to do.
Titus 1:12
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12One of them a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are always liars, evil beasts, slothful bellies.
Titus 1:10-11
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10For there are also many disobedient, vain talkers, and seducers: especially they who are of the circumcision:
11Who must be reproved, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake.

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  1. Paul identifies them as ‘rebels, idle talkers and deceivers, especially the Jewish Christians.’ [Titus 1:10-11] []

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