Fighting for Unity

  • Tuesday, April 19, 2011

  • “…and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently… 

    Paul implores Titus to speak confidently of "these things". As we near the end of our study of Titus, it is good to reflect back on all that has been said, to ensure that we indeed can "speak confidently" of the gospel.

    Two passages in Titus have summarized the gospel (2:11-14 / 3:4-7) with words that are worthy of repeating.

    Titus 2:11-14 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus; who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.
    Grace: receiving what we do not deserve
    Salvation: unsolicited rescue & deliverance

    Redemption: unpayable debt PAID
    Possession: trophies of His grace

    Titus 3:4-7 But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy,
    by the washing of regeneration and
    renewing by the Holy Spirit,
    whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that being justified by His grace we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

    Justification: declared guilt free

    Mercy: NOT receiving what we DO deserve
    Purification: cleansing
    Sanctification: new values/desires
    Empowerment: the Holy Spirit


    Those who are called to believe are then called to good deeds, so that HE may receive the glory.

    "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven."  Matthew 5:16

    Our actions, that others see, need to serve as light in a dark and hopeless world. Our "deeds", should meet the needs of others so that again, God is glorified.

    A concluding “diversion”; this past week, marks the world premiere of Handel’s Messiah (first performed in Dublin Ireland on April 12, 1742). While we typically think of this work as a Christmas piece, the majority of the music and scripture focuses on Easter, His resurrection and future return. This world premiere was actually a "benefit concert", and the announcement read as follows:

    “For relief of the Prisoners in the several Goals, and for the support of Mercer's Hospital in Stephen's Street, and of the Charitable Infirmary on the Inns Quay, on Monday the 12th of April, will be performed at the Musick Hall on Fishamble Street Mr. Handel's new Grand Oratorio, call'd the MESSIAH...”
 (Dublin Journal, 27 March, 1742)

    This great piece of music was first heard to benefit the prisoner, the sick, and the poor. Our Messiah does that still!

    “I am the LORD, I have called you in righteousness, I will also hold you by the hand and watch over you. And I will appoint you as a covenant to the people, as a light to the nations, to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the dungeon, and those who dwell in darkness from the prison." Isaiah 42:6-7


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