Hello everyone! I talked about what Christ’s plan for the Church was, earlier this week. We looked at Eph 2:17-3:11, where Paul states he was given the task to preach the gospel to the Gentiles and secondly, to reveal to everyone what the household order of the church is. And yesterday we look at passages describing how to live within a believing family. It takes a right understanding of our roles within the family, to fulfill God’s plan of the local church as a family of families. Families are the life of the church – for the good or the bad. We need strong families for the church to fulfill its mission.
Living Within a Family of Families
This is one of my favorite passages in Scripture right now. I’m working on memorizing this chapter. This speaks of the different roles within the church.
“But as for you, speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine. Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance.
Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
Likewise urge the young men to be sensible; in all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, so that the opponent will be put to shame, having nothing bad to say about us.” (Titus 2:1-8)
How have you typically interpreted this passage in the past? How have you been told to apply it to your life?
Most people consider this passage at the individual level, for example, “This is how I am supposed to live for God in my own personal walk.” But if we consider the context of Titus (and what I’ve been talking about – the context of Paul’s letters), we see that in chapter 1, verse 5 of Titus, Paul is writing specifically to Titus to “set in order what remains and appoint elders in every city as I directed you.” So Paul is talking about applying this within a community of believers.
So, yesterday the “household text” we looked at applies to the individual households. Today, this passage in Titus is referring to communities. Rather than addressing wives, husbands, etc., he is addressing parts of the community: elders, deacons, older men, older women, younger men, younger women, etc.
We see that it is the job of someone within the community to be teaching someone else for the purpose of building up the body and honoring God (v.5,8). This whole structure of older teaching the younger is for the benefit of sound, healthy, harmonious community life. Everyone is to be an example to one another and to keep each other accountable. There is to be an order of authority that is to be respected in order for everything to function smoothly.
In everything we do, we need to think about how we appear to the world. We either exhibit a godly community, above reproach and reflect God with our lives and relationships, or we show the brokenness that is humanity without God’s will.In everything we do, we either exhibit a godly community, reflecting God with our lives, or we… Click To Tweet
Let us live our lives with sound and sensible living: balanced living. When we live balanced, godly, harmonious lives in the church community and in our own homes, we make an impact for the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Are you fulfilling your role within the church community?
Ladies, I would encourage you to be seeking out an older woman to be learning from. Don’t think of this as being needy, or selfish. You are helping that older woman fulfill their role as well!! Swallow your pride (or fear, or humility) and ask to meet with them. Secondly, look around you to the younger women in your lives. Free up some of your time so that you can be speaking into their lives.
There are a lot of great benefits to mentoring and being mentored within community. Here are just some I can think of quickly:
- helps you realize that everyone has value and something to offer,
- teaches you to be active in shaping your life, not just passive,
- builds accountability and stability within a community, and
- encourages you to keep working hard through the struggles in life and not to give up.
There is so much benefit to how God has structured the Church. We NEED the active value of mentoring and being mentored in our lives!! Next time I’m going to talk about setting our life priorities around this idea, so that we can be living in a balanced, godly community and thus honor God.