Godly character crosses all age and gender boundaries, but men and women are equipped in different ways, and equipped in different ways at different ages.
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“Aged and Young”
- Men and women who believe in Jesus Christ have a job to do in His church
- And God uses men and women differently at different ages
- Some of the work God gives us the privilege of doing is outlined in today’s passage
- It has instructions for the aged and the young
- Both men and women
- How should we see our role?
- And how should we go about our work?
- Titus 2:1-8 tells us today, as we address the theme “Aged and Young”
- Godly character crosses all age and gender boundaries
- But we are equipped in different ways as men and women
- And equipped in different ways at different ages
- Just by mentioning these things so plainly
- We have already found these scriptures to be counter-cultural
- That’s not where the contradictions to worldly thinking end…
1 But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:
- No matter who is involved in what comes next in this chapter
- They should know that they must speak according to “sound doctrine”
- The Easy to Read Version says it this way:
“You, however, must tell everyone how to live in a way that agrees with the true teaching.”
- Everything you tell someone who may come to you for advice must be Biblical
- Don’t recommend any way of living that is not according to truth
- True, Biblical teaching must be the only teaching you share
- Then we arrive at some specifics…
2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
- Not only must aged men teach that which is Biblical and true
- But they must exhibit some specific character traits as they go about it
- They must be circumspect people – sober (certainly not given to wine)
- They are to be venerable, honorable, dignified, people of character – grave
- Of sound mind – temperate
- And strong, healthy – sound in faith
- (We’re talking about faith in Christ, of course)
- They must love people – having charity
- And be those who are steadfast, who have endurance – patience
- A person like this, who has committed to speaking truth, is credible
- They are worth listening to – for anyone
- Young men, and anyone else in the church will certainly be open to their teaching
- And keen to learn from their example
- Who else?
3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
- The aged women should not be unlike the aged men in their character
- The same characteristics should apply
- But they have some further instruction
- They are to be reverent in their demeanor – behavior as becometh holiness
- Never prone to slander – false accusers
- Certainly not given to (controlled by) wine
- And must be teachers of goodness (in a Biblical sense)
- Aged women like this have something to teach younger women in the church
- Specific things that are outlined here include
- To be sensible and of sound mind – sober
- To be an affectionate wife
- And to be maternal – loving husbands and children
- Aged women should teach younger women to curb their desires and impulses
- To have self-control – be discreet
- To be pure – chaste
- Also to care for the work of the household
- To be pleasant and agreeable – good
- Submitting to their own husbands
- So that the word of God is not evil spoken of
- The standards are very high for everyone involved
- The younger women learning from the elder
- Who presumably learned from someone older when they were young
- The aged have lived long enough
- They have both succeeded and failed
- They have learned many of the questions – and some of the answers
- Both parties should be enthusiastic about their part in the relationship
- God has provided a mutually beneficial partnership
- One of the most beautiful that can be seen in the church
- What about young men?
6 Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded.
7 In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity,
8 Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.
- Young men should be exhorted in a similar way
- They are to be of sound mind and to have self-control
- Urged to be a model of good works – in everything
- Having absolute integrity
- Teaching the truth themselves
- And doing so with dignity and sincerity
- Verse 8 in the ERV is worded like this:
“And your teaching should be clearly right so that you cannot be criticized. Then anyone who is against you will be ashamed. There will not be anything bad they can say about us.”
- I wonder where we would be in our local church
- If aged men and women
- Younger men and women
- Behaved like this?
- If there was constant teaching and learning taking place
- All parties with the humility to take up the task
- Or take on all challenges?
- The world will tell us something very different
- They couldn’t be more misguided
- Anyone who rejects right, wise, true, experienced council is headed for harm
- And anyone who holds it back is wasting it
- This teaching and learning is critical
- For this is God’s plan
- For the aged and young