Irvin Wasswa- Tylertown Campus Pastor LHBC
Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, 2 to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. 3 For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another.4 But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit
Dr. Bernard Nathanson was the leading abortion doctor in the 1970s in the United States. He himself performed over 60,000 abortions up to that point. He campaigned vigorously for the legalization of abortion in the country, sighting that he was dong a noble and righteous thing in providing a service that gave a woman the right to her own body. However, something changed for Dr. Nathanson in 1976: The Ultrasound was first introduced. Through the ultrasound, Dr. Nathanson was able to fully see fetal development in a way he had never seen before. The first time he saw an ultrasound, he was able to see the baby’s beating heart. As the technician zoomed into the image, he was able to see all four chambers of that same heart and at that moment he was convicted. Dr. Nathanson changed on that day, and with that change came a shift in how he practiced. He became a major advocate for human life existing in the womb at the onset of pregnancy. He went from aborting babies in the womb to being about protecting them. What a drastic change!
The apostle Paul in Titus 3 talks about another drastic change that has taken place in the lives of those who are Christians. Because of the love and goodness of God shown by sending His Son Jesus Christ, those who repent of their sins and trust in Jesus will be saved, and when we get saved we are changed (2 Corinthians 5:17), and are called to walk out this new life we have been called to walk in.
In verses 1 and 2 of the chapter Paul gives specific instructions for proper living for the Christian. These particular instructions for Godly living are birthed out of a life that has been changed by the Gospel. It isn’t the other way around. We do not merely attempt to do good things for God in order to gain His love and enter into a relationship, but rather it is through our changed life through the finished work of Jesus that we can apply and live out verses 1 and 2.
Here are some practical pieces of wisdom from Titus 3 to apply to our lives today as we look to live this changed life:
- Ponder The Good News: Paul in verse three highlights the reality that we ourselves were once lost. It is true. No matter how many times you attended church growing up, no matter how many scripture verses you memorized, all of us apart from Christ were lost with no hope; BUT GOD, being rich in mercy made a way for us to have life in Him again. Listen, remembering that reality helps us to show grace, meekness, and gentleness to ALL people as Paul commands in verse two because God showed that to us. At our worst, God sent His son Jesus to die for us. May we choose to extend that same graciousness to all people.
- Press into the Father: Run to the Father and rest. Run to Him who saved you, press into Him, abide in Him, and let him work in your heart and life. When we abide in Him, we bear fruit. That is the key. Some of us are stuck trying to bear our own spiritual fruit apart from Him but listen, we can’t (John 15:5).
Aren’t you glad for the Gospel and how it has changed your life? Aren’t you glad for a loving God who saved you when you were a sinner? I know I am. Our life has been drastically changed by the Gospel and the call for us is to walk in that change. By the way, the call in verses one and two to live in that way is countercultural. When we walk in that way, we are being lights in a dark and broken world. There are people all around you who need to see the drastic change through the Gospel that has taken place in your life, as well as hear about it. Evangelism is a both/and. Walk the walk and talk the talk. Will you live different? Will you tell them?
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Dear Heavenly Father, today I am thankful for the Gospel message. I am thankful for the hope of that message and how you sent your Son to save my soul. Thank you for changing me from the inside out! Help me to live differently today. Fill me with your spirit to live out this drastic change that has taken place in my life. Help me to be a light today for You. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?