The Gospel According to Paul: Victorious and Glorious! Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Thursday, June 28, 2018
Listen to “Thoughts in Worship 06.28.2018” on Spreaker.
“For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:11–14).
It takes just under two minutes to read Titus, chapter 2. What is impressive about this is how much practical wisdom is written there from which to draw. The Bible writer communicated jewels of wisdom. Paul encouraged prudence, love, faithfulness, soberness, goodness, and self-control. He advocated integrity, submission, faithful work, fidelity, and general righteousness. He spoke to the necessity of the elder men and women to be holy. They are to teach the younger ones how to live pleasing lives in the sight of God. He spoke to the blessing of women being of model characters in their households. Paul encouraged employees to give complete and perfect fidelity in their work. With a commitment to their employers, they would be worthy representatives of God.
Paul gave the comprehensive advice communicated in this short chapter for two principal purposes. First, our Father wants us to know that even in this present evil age, we can live godly in Christ. Unfortunately, so many people feel like the outward influences are too enormous to overcome, and that we cannot lead victorious lives. The focus in this is always skewed. However, the matter is not whether we can accomplish holiness, as much as it is whether our God is able to keep us from falling. Thus, it is our privilege to focus our attention on Him and receive His strength to overcome any difficulty. He is able.
The second purpose of the chapter is to show how victorious people, who live godly in this present evil age, have what is called the Blessed Hope. This hope is the realization that God places in His people in every generation that He could quite possibly return in their lifetime. This is encouraging, because we who love Him, want nothing more than to see Him. So, He places that sense of expectation in our hearts. And, one day, friends, He will burst the clouds and with jubilant trumpet sounds, He will keep His promise to take us to that place where there is no sorrow, crying, poverty, sin, or pain. We look forward to that day.
“For the grace of God (His unmerited favor and blessing) has come forward (appeared) for the deliverance from sin and the eternal salvation for all mankind. It has trained us to reject and renounce all ungodliness (irreligion) and worldly (passionate) desires, to live discreet (temperate, self-controlled), upright, devout (spiritually whole) lives in this present world, Awaiting and looking for the [fulfillment, the realization of our] blessed hope, even the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus (the Messiah, the Anointed One), Who gave Himself on our behalf that He might redeem us (purchase our freedom) from all iniquity and purify for Himself a people [to be peculiarly His own, people who are] eager and enthusiastic about [living a life that is good and filled with] beneficial deeds” (Titus 2:11–14, AMP).
I’m not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, are you?