Upon his arrival in Crete, Titus found the believers were in spiritual revolt resulting in disobedience and much confusion: “For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision” (Titus 1:10). The concepts of grace are under attack and God does not approve of rebellion in any form.
The stability and spiritual growth of any church depends upon its organizational structure and the quality of its leadership. There are at least two reasons that the Apostle sent Titus to this troubled church:
1. To Appoint Qualified Church Leaders Who Will Promote Spiritual Growth (1:5-9).
- A pastor must be qualified (vs. 6).
- A pastor must have blameless personal characteristics (vs.7).
- A pastor must have excellent interpersonal characteristics (vs.8).
- A pastor must be an able steward of sound doctrine (vs. 9).
- A pastor must be loyal to the doctrine taught to him.
- A pastor must be able to promote spiritual growth by sound doctrine.
Note: This is how you silence false teachers…see verse 11… “mouths must be stopped.”
2. To Remove The Troublemakers and/or Make Sure That Such Are Not Put In Places Of Leadership In The Future(1:10-16).
- False teachers must be silenced (vss. 10-11). Obviously there is a need here for strong Christian leadership to deal with this rebellion.
- False teachers are insubordinate deceivers (vs.10).
- These believers were like a sheep without a shepherd. As such, they cannot function under the plan of God.
- They are undisciplined and, as such, they could not submit themselves to the teachings of the Word of God and, thusly, they are disorderly and disobedient.
- In this condition they become “Church Hoppers” with no roots, with an insatiable search for entertainment or something that will stimulate and give them a moment of peace.
- False teachers are “vain talkers” (“mataiotes”= to speak from a vacuum).
- False teachers are deceivers – they are attacking the principles of grace for this present dispensation. In Paul’s day, they were primarily the Greek Philosophers, the Gnostics and especially those “of the circumcision” who were teaching asceticism, legalism and mysticism (kaballists).
- False teachers mouth’s must be stopped”(vs.11)!
- False teachers overthrow the church and corrupt the churches.
- False teachers teach error for money (vs. 11).
- As such they are Liars! = They arepromising what they cannot deliver. Behind all lies are jealousy, vindictiveness, implacability, anger, hatred and bitterness. Lying was a character and racial weakness as illustrated by the Cretans Poet Epimenides.
- Evil Beasts = like a wild, worthless beast.
- Slow Bellies = lazy gluttons as evidence of a lack of self-discipline.
- False teachers must be “sharply rebuked” – “refuted” (1:12-14).
- Yes, when members get out of line with the Word of God and they are, of necessity rebuked sharply, you will lose members! It is, however, better to have a pure and sound church rather than a large, loose and defiled church.
- This is a continuing and contemporary problem, which is generally ignored.
- False teachers are unfit in mind and deed (1:15-16).
- “Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled” (vs. 15).
- “They profess that they know God; but in works they deny Him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate” (vs. 15). This problem started when the Word of God was ignored!
Conclusion: The leadership of the church must be spiritually mature. The pastor must be a man who, by example and sound doctrine, promotes spiritual growth and refutes heresy. And, may those saints setting in the assembly be equally stirred up with zeal and diligence to refuting false teachers from the best Bible principles and arguments taken from the grace of God, and the doctrines of it.
[churchpack_superquote]“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58).
“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (Gal 6:9).[/churchpack_superquote]