Saturday, February 11, 2017
Block 50 Titus
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“For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people ” Titus 2:11
As a young man, Titus heard Paul preach during his first missionary trip. Titus was Greek, he was not raised with the Jewish scripture, so when he listened to Paul, he heard the word of God for the first time. Paul’s words touched Titus’ heart, and he believed. Paul was so impressed with Titus that he brought him to Jerusalem to show the other apostles that it was possible to convert a non-Jew to become a Christian. Titus became the poster child for non-Jewish people who wanted to become Christians (like most Christians today). The Jews encouraged Titus to be circumcised in order to be saved, but Paul wanted to show them that Christians could be saved without being circumcised.
After Paul’s first imprisonment, he travelled with Titus to the island of Crete, spreading the good news of Jesus Christ. Titus served as Paul’s interpreter and secretary. Soon, they began establishing several small churches on the island. Once the churches were established, Paul sent a replacement so that Titus could join him and continue mission work in western Macedonia (what is known as Albania today). Titus eventually returned to Clete to continue to strengthen the Church there. Titus’ role was primarily administrative. He was charged with straightening out the mess that had been made during his absence from the island. He also appointed elders in every town.
Titus traveled to Rome during Paul’s final imprisonment. Paul suspected his end was near and sent his faithful servant to Dalmatia (now known as Serbia and Montenegro). Paul trusted Titus because he was a gentle man with great insight, and was able to handle problems and criticism with grace. It would be wonderful to have a fraction of Titus’ grace and harmonious nature when facing criticism, discrimination or spiritual defamation. Today, Saint Titus is the patron saint of the US Army Chaplain Corps. The Corps has established an “Order of Titus” award, given for outstanding performance in ministry by chaplains or chaplain assistants.