Memorise Titus 1:9
“Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught…”
Paul’s epistle to Titus is one of the “pastoral letters” (the others are 1 and 2 Timothy), written to give instructions to young pastors. You can imagine it must have been difficult for Titus and Timothy to be “strict” and teach God’s word faithfully, when many of the church members were much older than them – remember, in the society at that time, age and seniority was very important!
So Paul had to encourage them not only to “hold fast” the word of God, and teach “sound doctrine” – but also to be firm against those who pervert the word of God (“teaching things which they ought not”) for their own benefit. The sort of description that Paul gave concerning these false teachers were indeed strong and direct. He certainly did not mince his words, as he described them as ‘gainsayers’ (those who speak against) who are ‘unruly’ (disobedient, cannot be disciplined), ‘vain talkers’ (one who speaks nothing but idle chatter) and ‘deceivers’ (one who misleads and seduces). He called them out directly, as one who subverts houses and teaches things for their own greedy gain. His assertion was that these people must be stopped and sharply rebuked. If they were to carry on their wicked ways, more people would be misled from the truth, and Titus’ church would turn away from God. Thus in this we see that it is definitely important to ‘attack’ these false teachers. It would be irresponsible for Titus to just remain silent and allow his congregation to fall prey to such dangerous teachings.
We sometimes hear people from other churches who complain that our
pastors “keep attacking others”! But now, you see – our pastors are just doing what Paul has taught Titus to do – to be faithful “watchmen” for the house of God! We should be faithful watchmen too! Do we know God’s word well enough that we can be the watchmen for our friends?
Thought: What would you answer when your friends say they will never come to our church, as our pastors are too “fierce” and keep on attacking others?
Prayer: Lord, give us the discernment to know when to defend Thy Word, and the right spirit to do it with love.