These days it seems much of what I have on my mind is how the church has taken the path of society, including our political system, and joined the world of discontentment through adversarial behavior. Somehow, don’t you agree that the church should be better than this? However, when we look at many of the Apostle Paul’s writings, he seemed to be consistently dealing with outside, worldly influences that caused division within the church. The sermon series that I am preaching from in these weeks is from Colossians and Paul has deep concerns about their invasion of a worldview differing from a Christ-view.
Please read carefully the first eleven verses of the Book of Titus chapter three:
Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers. They should be obedient, always ready to do what is good. 2 They must not slander anyone and must avoid quarreling. Instead, they should be gentle and show true humility to everyone.
3 Once we, too, were foolish and disobedient. We were misled and became slaves to many lusts and pleasures. Our lives were full of evil and envy, and we hated each other. 4 But—
When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, 5 he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit] 6 He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior. 7 Because of His grace He made us right in His sight and gave us confidence that we will inherit eternal life.
8 This is a trustworthy saying, and I want you to insist on these teachings so that all who trust in God will devote themselves to doing good. These teachings are good and beneficial for everyone.
9 Do not get involved in foolish discussions about spiritual pedigrees or in quarrels and fights about obedience to Jewish laws. These things are useless and a waste of time. 10 If people are causing divisions among you, give a first and second warning. After that, have nothing more to do with them. 11 For people like that have turned away from the truth, and their own sins condemn them.
So, in light of these special verses, as your pastor, I have to ask:
Are you ready to do what is good?
Do you ever slander and quarrel instead of being gentle and humble?
Do you have the confidence in your eternal salvation from verses 4-6?
Do you trust fully in the inerrant Word of God that are good and beneficial for us all?
And how about those foolish discussions – when we deviate from truth it’s a waste of time.
Divisions – do we have divisions? Of course, the answer is yes – we can do better than that!
Now, go back and read these eleven verses once more, pray about them and lets all ask the Lord for a better way to move forward in living out our relationship in Christ.