Intro: Studying Paul's letter to Titus, a pastor on Crete. First purpose:
To remind Titus to appoint godly leaders so they can exercise their authority to
silence false teachers. Second purpose of Paul's letter: To encourage Christians
to live godly lives. Last week, in Titus 2:1-10, Paul taught different groups of
Christians how their belief in Christ should play out in their everyday behavior.
We should live godly lives, to show others how good the Gospel is! Today,
we learn the why behind the how! Titus 2:11 begins w/"for;" connects this
sentence w/previous one.
God's Grace Saves Us! (Read Titus 2:11.) Grace ! Unmerited favor from
God. His gift! Can't earn it, deserve it, or qualify for it. Salvation !
From what? God's wrath; eternal justice, holy punishment of sin. Has appeared!
When did God's grace appear? When Christ came! (Read Hebrews 1:1-3.) Jesus is the revelation of God's grace!
All men? Does this mean all people are saved? Universalism says, "Everybody
gets into heaven eventually!" No, says Paul. (Read I Corinthians 6:9-11.) Some get in, some don't! What about
Titus 2:11's "all?" All classes/types/ races. Dividing line? God's grace revealed
in Christ. God's grace saves us!
God's Grace Sanctifies Us! (Read Titus 2:12.) "It?" Grace! What does it do? Teaches us to
say no to sin; yes to sanctification (holy living)! What does sanctification look
like? Grace teaches/disciplines us to say, "no..." (Negative!)
to ungodliness - core problem, disease: Don't really believe we need God.
and worldly passions - different manifestations, symptoms.
and to live (Positive!) self controlled - rightly related to yourself
upright - rightly related to others
and godly (reverent) lives - rightly
related to God
God's grace sanctifies us. To put it another way, God's grace not only saves
us from hell in the future, it also saves us from sin in the present!
God's Grace Prepares Us for Jesus' Return! (Read Titus 2:12-13.) This present age (evil world opposed
to godly living; yet temporary!) We wait for the blessed hope -- the glorious appearing
of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ . Notice: second use of the word
"appear," (see v. 11!) Jesus is coming back; why our life in this present age is
temporary! His return will be hope-filled, glorious! Until then, recognizing Jesus
as your God and Savior means you are cooperating w/His grace which is working in
you to sanctify you! (Read I John 3:2-3.) God's grace purifies us, saves us from sin now,
prepares us for Jesus' glorious return!
God's Grace Saves Us...But How? (Read Titus 2:14.) How did Jesus, our great God and Savior, save
us? He gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself
a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good. Jesus gave/sacrificed
Himself for us, dying on the cross, taking the Father's wrath over our sin upon
Himself. Jesus was our substitute, stand in. Why? 1) To redeem us from all wickedness,
to buy us back from our slavery to sin. Why? 2) To purify for Himself a people that
are His very own, eager to do what is good! Why did Jesus die on the cross? So that
you and I can live holy lives, eagerly serving Him. Please listen to me: If we complacently
settle for anything less than biblical holiness in our personal lives, it is an
insult to the sacrifice Christ made for us. (Read Romans 6:1.) Unthinkable for a Christian to remain complacent
about any known sin in their lives. God's grace not only saves us from hell in the
future, it also saves us from sin in the present! The grace that saves us
also sanctifies us!
Application! (Read Titus 2:15.) Paul concludes w/a reminder of Titus' authority.
Why? B/c sometimes Christians don't want to hear the truth that we must continue
to repent, turn from sin, purify themselves. (Read Hebrews 12:14!) How do we grow in
holiness? God's grace saves us from sin in the present! God's grace enables us to
believe in, submit to, and obey God's Word. Pastors who teach, preach, apply God's
Word to our lives are one of the ways God's grace works in us!