Titus for You: Review

Titus-For-YouTitus is one of the “Pastoral Epistles” of the New Testament. Along with 1&2 Timothy, Paul uses these letters to describe how life in the church is to be lived. Many people tend to think that the church described in the Pastoral Epistles is boring compared to the church described in Acts. This, however, could not be further from the truth. The book of Titus is a letter written to a pastor (Titus) in Crete. Paul had planted a church on the isle of Crete, but had to leave. He left Titus in leadership to establish order and put more leaders in place. He instructs Titus on the qualifications of elders, to warn against false doctrine, and to commend Christ in everyday mission. In Titus for You, Tim Chester writes an exposition on this short letter giving implications for the church today. 
Four Applications from Titus for You:
Eternal Significance. Paul writes to Titus to remind him that what the church has eternal significance. As Americans we do not live with tomorrow in mind, let alone live with eternity in mind. Yet, the fact remains that what we do in this life has eternal impact. We are not called to build our own kingdom, but to think beyond ourselves and build the kingdom of God. Chester says, “Paul urges us to build for the long term—the really long term. He urges us to build with eternity in mind.” This is extremely easier said than done. The culture tells us to seek our own happiness and do what is best for us, but the gospel says do what most glorifies God. Living with eternity in mind glorifies God. 
Trust Godly Leaders. Jesus is the head of his church, but he has placed qualified leaders in churches to shepherd his people. Paul placed Titus in Crete to “appoint elders in every town” (1:5). He goes on make a list of qualifications that are similar to the list in 1 Tmothy. “If anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it” (1:6-9, ESV). As qualified leaders, elders are to be trusted. The problem is that the culture encourages us to question authority and do as we please. This is a problem in many churches where the pastor is voted out of leadership when the congregation does not agree with him. The Bible instructs us to trust those whom God has placed in authority over us. 
Multigenerational Disciple-Making. The church is called to make disciples (Matt 28:18-20). Paul instructs Titus to encourage disciple making in everyday living. He instructs older men and women to model self-control to younger men and women (2:2-7). This happens in both official and unofficial contexts. Discipleship must be the mindset for all believers. Older men are encouraged to spend time with younger men in everyday life in order to model good works. Older women are encouraged to spend time with younger women in everyday life in order model good works. Yet, this can be difficult in a culture that does not value the previous generations. The culture tells us that young is “in” and youth are to be celebrated. However, we need the older generations more than we realize. It is for this reason that Paul urges Titus to encourage everyday multigenerational disciple making.
Everyday Mission. As humans we tend to be forgetful. It is for this reason that when speaking of the gospel Paul urges Titus to “insist on these things” (3:8). The gospel (Jesus’ death and resurrection) is the good news that we must insist on! It is not only profitable for salvation, but we are to constantly remind ourselves everyday of the gospel. We remind ourselves of the gospel so we do not forget that we are on a mission. We are on a mission to share the gospel with the nations. The mission of the church cannot be achieved just on Sundays, all believers must live on mission everyday. Chester encourages us to “be people who are proactively looking for opportunities to bless our cities and to serve our neighbors.” Doing this takes gospel intentionality, it takes planning, and prayer. This is a mission we are all called to as ambassadors for Christ. 
Titus For You is an excellent resource for the church today! If the church has any hope of making a dent for the gospel in our culture we must live for eternal significance, trust leaders, implement multigenerational disicple-making, and live on everyday mission. I recommend this book to any pastor or small group leader. It is an excellent resource for a sermon series or small group study. 
 
(I received this through the Cross Focused Review program in exchange for an honest review of the work.)
 
 
 
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