TO TITUS MY
TRUE CHILD IN A COMMON FAITH: tito gnesio tekno kata koinen pistin: (2Cor
2:13; 7:6; 7:13 7:14 8:6; 8:16 8:23 12:18; Gal 2:3)
(Mentioned by name
in 12 verses = 2 Cor 2:13; 7:6, 13f; 8:6,
16, 23; 12:18; Gal 2:1, 3; 2 Tim 4:10; Titus 1:4, Nice summary in
"a genuine child" (GWT)
"my loyal child" (NRSV)
"my own child" (Darby)
Spurgeon on to Titus - Among the friends of Paul,
Titus was one of the most useful and one of the best beloved.
Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles, and Titus was a Gentile. I would
suppose that both his parents were Gentiles. In this respect he differed
from Timothy, whose mother was Jewish. Timothy would well serve as a
preacher to the circumcision, but Titus would be a man after Paul’s
heart as a preacher to the Gentiles. He seems to have been a man of
great common sense, so that, when Paul had anything difficult to be
done, he sent Titus. When the collection was to be made at Corinth on
behalf of the poor saints at Jerusalem, Paul sent Titus to stir the
members up, and with him another brother to take charge of the
contributions (2Cor 12:18). Titus appears to have been a man of business
capacity and strict probity as well as a man who could order the church
aright and preach the gospel with power. Paul was, on one occasion,
comforted by the coming of Titus (2Cor 7:6). At another time, he was sad
because Titus was not where he had hoped to meet with him (2Cor 2:13).
Though we know little about him from the Acts of the Apostles, or
anywhere else, he appears to have been in every way one of the ablest of
the companions of Paul. The apostle takes care to mention him over and
over again in his epistles to the Galatians and to the Corinthians,
rendering honor to whom honor is due. It is a great pity when eminent
men forget those who help them, and it is a sad sign when any of us do
not gratefully feel how much we owe to our coadjutors. What can any
servant of God do unless he has kind friends to bear him up by their
prayers and their help? Paul did not forget to mention his friend and
Titus is not mentioned in the book of Acts and the majority of the
occurrences of his name are found in 2 Corinthians (ISBE article).
The Man Who Refreshed His Master -
Titus [Tī'tus]—honorable from “i honor.” Titus was born of Gentile
parents, and was a convert from heathenism. It is more than likely that
Paul led him to Christ (Gal. 2:3; Titus 1:4).
There seemed to have been a peculiar bond of affection between Paul and
his Grecian convert. How Paul loved him and appreciated his trusted
companionship (2 Cor. 7:6, 13)! What an inspiration he was to Paul on
several of his journeys (Gal. 2:1, 3)! In 2 Corinthians Paul mentions
Titus some nine times. Paul sent Titus to Corinth as his delegate. Paul
anxiously awaited the return of Titus, and he refreshed the spirit of
the apostle both by his presence and the good news he brought from
Corinth (2 Cor. 2:12, 14). In the precious epistle Paul sent to Titus,
we learn more facts about the loving co-operation between these two
noble men. When Paul was released from prison, Titus accompanied him on
a visit to Crete, Paul leaving him there to assist the Church in a
I. Set in order things that were wanting.
II. Ordain elders in every city.
III. Avoid unprofitable discussion.
IV. Duly assert his authority (Titus 1:5; 2:1; 3:9, 15).
It may be that Paul sent his epistle to Titus by the hands of Zenas and
Apollos (3:13), to assist him in the difficult task at Crete. Paul then
wanted Titus to join him for the winter in Nicopolis (3:12). Titus was
with the apostle during part of his second imprisonment in Rome (2 Tim.
4:10). Both men were sustained in their arduous labors by “the blessed
hope” (Titus 2:13). A godly man of Corinth is spoken of as Titus Justus
(Acts 18:7, RV). Titus himself is not mentioned directly in the Acts.
Doubtless he was included in the “certain others” in Acts 15:2. (Ref)
(gnesios) means legitimately born or being lawfully begotten.
Child (1Ti 1:1,2; 2Ti 1:2)
(5043) (teknon) refers to one who is an offspring of human
parents by natural birth but in this context clearly alludes to Titus'
"new birth" in which Paul had been instrumental. This combination of
similar words accentuates Paul's feeling for his spiritual son and
emphasizes that Titus
was a legitimate spiritual son, a true convert who was truly born again
and thus was a sincere believer. Paul appeals to Philemon for "my
child Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my imprisonment"
(Philemon 1:10) not in a natural, but
in a spiritual sense, Paul being the instrument of his conversion.
Titus then was a young convert of Paul's but was a full-blooded Greek,
unlike Timothy, who was half Jewish (Gal 2:3; Acts 16:1). Titus had
apparently accompanied Paul on his first missionary journey, or at least
part of it (Gal 2:1). In addition, Titus had succeeded in Corinth where
Timothy had failed. Paul had left him in Crete as superintendent of the
work there. Now he writes him from Nicopolis (Titus 3:12).
Spurgeon - This was a very close
relationship—not that Titus was Paul’s son after the flesh, for there
was no natural relationship between them at all. Probably, in the early
part of their lives, they had been total strangers to one another. But
now Paul views Titus as his son. We know, many of us, that the grace of
God creates relationships of a very near and tender kind—relationships
that will endure through life, relationships that will outlast death and
be, perhaps, even more strong and vivid in eternity than they are here.
Up yonder, where they “neither marry nor are given in marriage” (Matt
22:30), I should think that the relationships that come of the flesh
will, to a large degree, be merged in their celestial condition. But
there, the sonship of Titus toward Paul is even stronger than it was
when the two were here below.
The apostle Paul not only said of Titus that he was his son, but he
called him his “true” son. What a mercy it is when we know that many of
our converts are our “true” spiritual children, in whom the work of
repentance was deep and whose profession of faith was sincere. They are
not the products of free will but the products of the Holy Spirit. They
bring forth fruit, not of themselves, but their fruit is found in Christ
Jesus to whom they are eternally joined!
Hiebert adds that "the employment of
the term "child" indicates dearness, while the adjective "true" or
"genuine" is an acknowledgment that Titus is running true to his
spiritual parentage" and that Paul's relationship with Titus "is
in the realm of their common faith...their mutually held faith that
places them into accord with one another and with all the elect who
share this faith."
Common faith (Ro
1:12; 2Cor 4:13; 2Pet 1:1; Jude 1:3)
in the sense of belonging to several, thus “held in common”, open
to all. Koinos means that which belongs to several, and
thus is said of things had in common.
Peter helps us understand this quality of faith, writing
"to those who have received a
faith of the
same kind as ours".
is the possession of all of God’s people and not just a selected few.
Common (2839)(koinos) can
have a negative meaning in some contexts (unclean, defiled), but that is
not the case here where koinos describes that which belongs equally to
several and thus that which was treated as in common (communal = shared
or used in common by members of the community) (cp Acts 2:44, 4:32).
A T Robertson explains this faith
to a Gentile (a Greek) like Titus as well as to a Jew like Paul and so
common to all races and classes".
It is a faith
of the same nature, kind, object, operation, and effect. All who
share in this common saving faith
also share in a "common (koinos) salvation..." (Jude 1:3-note)
Faith (4102)(pistis) as
it relates to God, is the conviction that God exists and is the Creator
and Ruler of all things well as the Provider and Bestower of eternal
salvation through Christ. In this context pistis could refer
either to the act of faith or to that in which their faith had been
placed ( See study of
MacArthur - The phrase
common faith can be interpreted subjectively or objectively.
Subjectively it would refer to saving faith (see Spurgeon below),
which Titus shared in common with Paul and all other believers.
Objectively it would refer to the truths of the Christian faith,
which Titus shared in common with the apostle and with all other
believers who are sound in doctrine. Although Paul was here probably
stressing the subjective aspect of Titus’s faith, it is obvious from
this epistle and from accounts in the book of Acts that Paul considered
Titus to be sound in doctrine. He would not have left any church in the
hands of a leader who was not thoroughly grounded in the Word.
Spurgeon - The apostle,
wishing to show how real was the union between himself and Titus, next
mentioned that they were brothers by a common faith. Paul says
that he and Titus were one “according to a common faith”; that
is, the one faith was believed by them in the same way. There is only
one faith worth having; Paul calls it in Titus 1:1 “the faith of the
chosen of God.” It is real faith, cordial faith, childlike faith,
God-given faith. It is not a faith that springs out of human nature
unaided by the Holy Ghost. It is precious faith, faith that is the gift
of God and the work of the Holy Spirit. Now, if we believe only
intellectually, we do not enter into sympathy with one another as we do
when we both believe spiritually, with heart and soul, from the very
depths of our being. I trust that I can say of myself and of you also
that we have received faith as a gift from God. Here, then, is another
sacred tie binding us together. Your faith and my faith, if they are
both true faith, are “a common faith.” I may have very little faith, and
you may have the full assurance of understanding, but your faith and
mine are of the same sort. Your faith may be only as a grain of mustard
seed and your friend’s faith may have grown into a tree, but it is the
same faith. It clings to the same Christ and will produce the same
eternal results in the salvation of the soul. Come, then, let us
spiritually shake hands again over this second point. First, we are
closely related to one another; secondly, we possess a common faith,
which is a wonderful bond of union between us.
(Ro 1:7; Eph 1:2; Col 1:2; 1 Ti 1:2; 2Ti 1:2)
Spurgeon - Blessed men scatter blessings. When
the benediction of God rests upon us, we pour out benedictions upon
others. (The Second Coming) The apostle, wishing to show how real was
the union between himself and Titus, next mentioned that they were
brothers by a common faith. Paul says that he and Titus were one
“according to a common faith”; that is, the one faith was believed by
them in the same way. There is only one faith worth having; Paul calls
it in v. 1 “the faith of the chosen of God.” It is real faith, cordial
faith, childlike faith, God-given faith. It is not a faith that springs
out of human nature unaided by the Holy Ghost. It is precious faith,
faith that is the gift of God and the work of the Holy Spirit. Now,
if we believe only intellectually, we do not enter into sympathy with
one another as we do when we both believe spiritually, with heart and
soul, from the very depths of our being. I trust that I can say of
myself and of you also that we have received faith as a gift from God.
Here, then, is another sacred tie binding us together. Your faith and my
faith, if they are both true faith, are “a common faith.” I may have
very little faith, and you may have the full assurance of understanding,
but your faith and mine are of the same sort. Your faith may be only as
a grain of mustard seed and your friend’s faith may have grown into a
tree, but it is the same faith. It clings to the same Christ and will
produce the same eternal results in the salvation of the soul. Come,
then, let us spiritually shake hands again over this second point.
First, we are closely related to one another; secondly, we possess a
common faith, which is a wonderful bond of union between us.
[word study]) is the fountain of all blessings from which peace
springs. Grace is Father's provision via the Spirit of Christ to
effect regeneration and then subsequent transformation little by little
into the image of Jesus.
defines grace as
"the divine love manifesting itself towards guilty
sinners in free forgiveness and unmerited blessing. It speaks of our own
unworthiness and the spontaneous redeeming act of God in Christ when
there was nothing in us to merit it. Peace
is the resultant reconciliation (Ed
note: peace with
God) experienced by those who respond to the
grace of God. It is the outcome of the restoration of harmony between
our soul and God on the basis of the atonement. Our hearts are kept in
peace (Ed note: peace
as we realize that the unmerited favor of God has been bestowed upon us
is the divine strength Titus will need to rely on for effective service
in a difficult mission field like the isle of Crete.
is the merciful kindness
by which God, exerting His holy influence upon souls, turning them to
Christ, and then keeping, strengthening and increasing them in Christian faith, knowledge,
affection, and finally kindling them to live a life of godliness in the
midst of "a crooked and perverse generation"
commonly defined as favor done without expectation of return. It is the
free expression of the lovingkindness of God to mankind and is
motivated by His benevolence.
is the unmerited favor of God.
Grace is not license to do
as we please, but power to do as we should. God’s grace insures that
those who have been truly regenerated will persevere until the end of
as follows: "In its use among the pagan Greeks it referred to a favor
done by one Greek to another out of the pure generosity of his heart,
and with no hope of reward. When it is used in the New Testament, it
refers to that favor which God did at Calvary when He stepped down from
His judgment throne to take upon
Himself the guilt and penalty of human
sin. In the case of the Greek, the favor was done to a friend, never an
enemy. In the case of God it was an enemy, the sinner, bitter in his
hatred of God, for whom the favor was done. God has no strings tied to
the salvation He procured for man at the Cross. Salvation is given the
believing sinner out of the pure generosity of God’s heart. The Greek
word referred to an action that was beyond the ordinary course of what
might be expected, and was therefore commendable. What a description of
that which took place at the Cross! The grace spoken of here is
sanctifying grace [Ed note: Grace is the Spirit of Christ
indwelling me & enabling me to overcome sin. I cannot overcome it...it
will overcome me if I try. All attempts to defeat the flesh in my own
power will fail] that part of salvation given the saint in which God
causes him to grow in Christ-likeness through the ministry of the Holy
K. S. Wuest's Word Studies from the Greek New Testament: Studies in the
Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament: Grand Rapids: Eerdmans)
Spurgeon - We have a mutual
benediction, for Paul wishes for Titus, “Grace and peace.” This is just
what Titus would have wished for Paul if he had been sending him a
benediction. We need “grace” to help. The most eminent saint has no more
grace to give away than the least in the family of God has. The fact is
all of us need grace. You who preach the gospel, you who are deacons,
you who are elders, you who teach the infant class, you who can only
give away a tract, you must do all these works with grace or else you
will not really do them at all. Our need for grace is a common meeting
place for us all. Only grace can save you, and only grace can save me,
and the grace of God shall be given to us and all believers as we have
need of it....The next word of the benediction is “peace” to
comfort. I hope that many of us know what peace of conscience means,
what peace with God means, and what peace with man means. If God has
given us His peace, it is a treasure of untold value, a “very valuable
pearl” (Matt 13:46). To be at peace with God is better than to be a
millionaire or Czar of all the Russias. Peace of mind, restfulness of
heart, quiet of spirit, deliverance from care, from quarrelling, from
complaining—I know that I need that kind of peace, and you need it too,
do you not? You need it in your family, in your business, in your own
hearts. Well, then, here we meet again, having this same need of peace.
And when we get it, we meet once more in finding the same delicious
enjoyment of it.
And peace - No peace without
grace. No Christ, no peace. Know Christ, know peace!
eiro = to join or bind together that which has been separated)
literally pictures the binding or joining together again of that which
had been separated or divided and thus setting at one again, a meaning
convey by the common expression of one “having it all together”. It
follows that peace is the opposite of division or dissension. Peace as
a state of concord and harmony is the opposite of war. Peace was used as
a greeting or farewell corresponding to the Hebrew word shalom - "peace
Note that although the King James adds "mercy", this word
is not found in the critical Greek manuscripts from which most modern versions
(NASB, NIV, et. al.) are translated.
means freedom from anxiety, panic, and distraction despite adverse
is the Greek word eirene which is the root of our English
"serene" (clear and free of storms or unpleasant change,
stresses an unclouded and lofty tranquility) and "serenity".
implies health, well-being, and prosperity. In
secular Greek eirene referred to cessation or absence of
war. In Adam all men before salvation were ''at war'' with the Almighty
and our peace with Him was ''disturbed''. Justification by faith resulted
in reconciliation and restoration of peace with God (like before the
Fall of man in Eden).
Eirene includes both the concept of
an agreement, pact, treaty or bond and an attitude of rest or
security. Objectively saints in Christ Jesus are at peace
with God (Ro 5:1-note).
The war between the believer and God is over, and the treaty was paid
for by the blood of Christ. Because of that, believers are at rest, and
is the harmony that exists between God and those who "receive the
reconciliation" (Ro 5:11-note).
Webster defines peace as a state of
tranquility or quiet, freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or
emotions, harmony in personal relations, a pact or agreement to end
hostilities between those who have been at war or in a state of enmity,
state of repose in contrast with or following strife or turmoil.
Jim Walton was translating the NT for the Muinane people of La Sabana in
the jungles of Colombia. But he was having trouble with the word peace.
During this time, Fernando, the village chief, was promised a 20-minute
plane ride to a location that would have taken him 3 days to travel by
walking. The plane was delayed in arriving at La Sabana, so Fernando
departed on foot. When the plane finally came, a runner took off to
bring Fernando back. But by the time he had returned, the plane had
left. Fernando was livid because of the mix-up. He went to Jim and
launched into an angry tirade. Fortunately, Walton had taped the chief's
diatribe. When he later translated it, he discovered that the chief kept
repeating the phrase, "I don't have one heart." Jim asked other
villagers what having "one heart" meant, and he found that it was like
saying, "There is nothing between you and the other person." That,
Walton realized, was just what he needed to translate the word peace. To
have peace with God means that there is nothing--no sin, no guilt, no
condemnation--that separates us. And that peace with God is possible
only through Christ (Ro 5:1-note).
Do you have "one heart" with God?
Wuest - "The word "peace"
in classical Greek means "to bind together," in the New Testament, "the
operation of God’s grace in binding the believing sinner to God and His
life again, this operation continued in bringing that believer in his
experience more and more into harmony with God in his life and service,"
the latter being the particular phase to which Paul refers here."
in contemporary colloquial Greek this word eirene had two interesting
usages. It was used of the serenity which a county enjoyed under the
just and beneficent government of a good emperor; and it was used of the
good order of a town or village. Villages had an official who was called
the superintendent of the village’s eirene, the keeper of the public
peace. Usually in the New Testament eirene stands for the Hebrew shalom
and means not just freedom from trouble but everything that makes for a
man’s highest good. It is interesting to note that Chara and Eirene both
became very common Christian names in the Church.
FROM GOD THE
FATHER AND CHRIST JESUS OUR SAVIOR: apo theou patros kai kuriou iesou
christou tou soteros hemon: (Titus
1:3; Lk 2:11; Jn 4:42; 2Pe 1:11; 2:20; 3:2; 3:18 1Jn 5:14) (All of
Paul's 12 uses of Savior = Eph 5:23; Phil 3:20; 1Ti 1:1; 2:3;
4:10; 2Ti 1:10; Titus 1:3, 4; 2:10, 13; 3:4, 6)
Spurgeon - We are one in the
source of every blessing. All good comes to us from God the Father
through the one Mediator, Christ Jesus our Savior. You do not have
anything that is worth having except what your Father gave to you. And
your Father is my Father, and the hand that passes the blessing to you
passes the blessing to me and to the whole family of believers.
modifies both Father and Christ Jesus the Son and thus every blessing, every comfort,
comes to us both from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior (cp 2Pe
1:2-3 where "seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything
pertaining to life and godliness" refers to Jesus). In
linking the Father and the Son as the source of grace and peace the
Spirit of God implies Their complete equality.
adds that "The ultimate source is God the Father Who devised our
salvation in sending of His Son, while the immediate source is "Christ
through Whose atoning work grace and peace become freely available to
all through faith...Both Father and Son
are our Saviour, for the salvation which they bestow is the same. This
double use of the term Saviour is clear proof of Paul's conviction of
the true deity of Christ Jesus."
Spurgeon - These
blessings not only all come from the same source, but they all come by
the same channel: “Christ Jesus.” There is the sacred blood-mark
on every covenant blessing, whether you have it or your brother has it
or some Christian far away in India gets it. It all comes by the same
divinely appointed channel—the man, the God, Christ Jesus our Lord.
There is one more point of union, and that lies in our common
relationship to our Lord Jesus Christ. See how Paul puts it, “Christ
Jesus our Savior.” He is, to all of us who believe, the Anointed
One, so anointed that every word that Jesus Christ has spoken is to us
infallibly inspired. We believe in Jesus not only as men say they do
today, but we believe really in Jesus, for we believe in His doctrine,
in that which He Himself spoke, and in that which He spoke by His
inspired apostles. We cannot separate between Christ and the truth He
came to preach and the work He came to do, nor will we attempt to do so.
He is to us the Anointed of God as Prophet, Priest, and King, and we
accept Him in all the offices for which He bears that anointing. As
brothers in one common faith, we rejoice in the common Christ whose
anointing has fallen upon us, too. The apostle further writes, “Christ
Jesus our Savior.” Sometimes in the Bible we find the Lord Jesus Christ
called “a Savior.” “Today a Savior, who is Christ the Lord, was
born for you in the city of David” (Luke 2:11). That is good, but it is
not good enough for what poor sinners need. Our Lord Jesus Christ is not
a Savior among other saviors, though He does instrumentally make His
people saviors, and happy are they who, as instruments in His hands,
save souls from death and hide multitudes of sins. But Jesus is also
called the Savior. He is “the Savior of all people, especially of
believers” (1 Tim 4:10)—the Savior par excellence. Then next, he is my
Savior, as Mary sang, “My spirit has rejoiced greatly in God my Savior”
(Luke 1:47). That is sweet indeed—to get a personal grip of Him, and to
know that He has saved me from despair, from sin, from the power of
evil, from death, from hell. But there is in some respects a superior
sweetness in this plural pronoun, “our Savior.” Selfishness is gone when
we come to feel an intense delight in this truth, that the Lord Jesus
Christ is the Savior of many more besides ourselves. “Our Savior”—does
not this bind us to one another? A common delight in one person is one
of the strongest bands of sympathetic union that can bind men together,
and a common obligation to some superior being becomes a great reason
for our being knit together in love. My Savior, your Savior, our Savior:
“Christ Jesus our Savior.” Whenever we feel any disposition to break off
from this brother and from that whom we know to be, after all, saved in
the Lord, let us come together with a fresh clasp of the hands as we say
to one another, “We rejoice in our Savior, and we are one in Him.”