Daily Archives: December 18, 2022

Titus 1-3, Philemon 1, and Hebrews 1:1-2:10

Dear Carol (insert your name), legitimate daughter(son/daughter)in the faith: Receive everything God our Father and Jesus our Savior give you! (Titus 1:4 The Message, with a slight name adjustment)

How wonderful to just ponder on that. The fact the God wants to give me anything is just amazing to me, mind boggling actually, but I would like for my life to be such a one that the blessings rain from heaven continuously.

Paul talks about Titus appointing leaders. I am a leader, as I think we all are. It might be to your spouse, your children, your co-workers, family members, a stranger on the street, or friends in, and out of church. A leader is a person who convinces other people to follow. How many times has someone followed me to the mall, to a restaurant, to school or work? All opportunities to bond together or inspire passion towards something. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone followed me to Christ? Titus was assigned to choose deacons, but the qualities, in my opinion, apply to every Christ follower.

Appoint leaders in every town according to my instructions. As you select them, ask, “Is this man well thought of? Are his children believers? Do they respect him and stay out of trouble?”It is important that a church leader, responsible for the affairs in God’s house be looked up to–not pushy, not short-tempered, not a drunk, not a bully, not money hungry. He must welcome people, be helpful, wise, fair, reverent have a good grip on himself, and have a good grip on the Message, knowing how to use the truth to either spur people on in knowledge or stop them in their tracks if they oppose it. (Titus 1: 5b-9 The Message)

I feel there is so much noise in the world, it would be nice if it switched to music!

My actions say a lot about who I am as a person.

Titus was to guide older men to lives of temperance, dignity and wisdom, into healthy faith, love and endurance.

The older men were to guide older women into lives of reverence so they end up as neither gossips nor drunks, but models of goodness.

The older women would guide the younger women to lives showing love to their husbands and children, being virtuous and pure, keeping a good house, being good wives. they didn’t want anyone looking down on God’s message because of their behavior.

The older men were to teach the younger men to live disciplined lives.

How was Titus to do this? By example. How am I to do this? By example. If I don’t pass it on to the younger generation, they won’t pass it on to the next and so on. There is a reason behind it all. Like traditions, a lot of the above has been lost. I can do what I can to keep it flowing, as well as the next person. It just takes one person at a time. When I meet someone’s need, it puts a smile on their face as well as mine. And, it can open a door for me to talk about why I would want to help them. As it says above, be helpful, welcome people–don’t turn them away because they are different in any way, don’t be pushy or a bully. All things we see in the news everyday with horrible consequences. All things that if everyone would practice, we would live united, in security, and peace.

Remind the people to respect the government and be law-abiding, always ready to lend a helping hand. No insults, no fights. God’s people should be bighearted and courteous. (Titus 3:1-2 The Message)

But when God, our kind and loving Savior God, stepped in, He saved us from all that. It was all His doing, we had nothing to do with it. He gave us a good bath, and we came out of it new people, washed inside and out by the Holy Spirit. Our Savior Jesus poured out new life so generously. God’s gift has restored our relationship with Him and given us back our lives. And there’s more life to come–an eternity of life! You can count on this. (Titus 3:4-8 The Message)

It is because of Christ, and the help of the Holy Spirit that we can live our lives differently from the world.

Philemon is a story asking for grace and forgiveness. Paul starts out complimenting Philemon for his good heart and service to the things of God. Buttering him up, in my opinion, to get what he wanted. And if that didn’t work, he threw in a little guilt trip–you owe your very life to me. It says there is nothing new under the sun and I see that here. I use the same techniques to try to get my way. But Paul was trying to save a man’s life who mattered to him. Onesimus was a slave who stole from his master and ran away. Such actions were deserving of death back then. But in running away he met Paul and became a Christian. It was only “Christ-like” to return and face the consequences of his actions. It doesn’t tell us how Philemon reacted to Onesimus’ return, but Paul had faith he would do the right thing.

Do me this big favor, friend. You’ll be doing it for Christ, but it will also do my heart good. I know you well enough to know you will. You’ll probably go far beyond what I’ve written. (Philemon 1:20-21 The Message)

How many times has someone wronged me and I could have given them grace instead of the cold shoulder? This is another opportunity to extend kindness and forgiveness to others that don’t deserve it. The fact that they don’t deserve it makes it more meaningful. Did I deserve what Christ did for me? I think not!

Father God, Your words are powerful and holds all things together. I have no idea the extent of Your spoken words and how they affect the world around me. You created all things. Your creations will never fade or wear out. Jesus was right along side you then, as He is now. Thank you for the Holy Spirit that enables me to give kindness and forgiveness to those that don’t deserve it. Help me to wear the cloak of Jesus as I go through my daily activities. Help me to model generosity, love, forgiveness, and the willingness to lend a helping hand, as Jesus modeled here on earth. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Thank you for strength and courage to live life as a leader. In Jesus’ name, Amen!

Carol (carolvorwe)


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