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Rays of Light Bible Lessons by Keith Holder

SOUND DOCTRINE FOR YOUNG MEN

Titus 2:6-8 Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. In all things showing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine showing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, 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.

Paul continues to give Titus sound doctrine that he is to teach to all age groups within the body of Christ. Here we find sound doctrine for young men. They, just as all other age groups, are to be sober minded. A sober mind is the security net of youth when decisions may lead to either safety or danger. This means that young men are to exercise prudent, sound judgment in all matters, both physical and spiritual - both earthly and heavenly. Decisions of life should never be made in a reckless, hasty, or rash manner. A wise decision comes from sufficient discretionary thought, that weighs all consequences that may result from making it. The book of Ecclesiastes is generally credited to the wisdom of Solomon. Notice what he says about the final consequences of all decisions made by young men. Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth; and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes: but know thou, that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment (Eccl. 11:9).

Within the church of Christ, Aged men, especially the elders of the congregation, must train its young Christian men in that which is right in the sight of God. They must be trained to study the word of God, accept it, believe it, and obediently practice it in their lives. The young men of the body of Christ must learn to teach the word of God, not only to their fellow Christians, but also to non-Christians as well; they must learn to lead prayers and congregational singing; they must learn to become servants, and fill the needs of the church membership, as well as the needs of people in the community in which they live. And finally the young men, within a congregation of God's people, must learn to become the future leaders that will fill the roles of elders and deacons, preachers and teachers, within the church of Christ, as their aged men become unable to continue in these positions, or pass on to their reward in heaven. Young men, heed God's calling, and also heed the advise of the apostle Peter. He wrote, likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble (1 Pet. 5:5).

No doubt, Titus was a teacher of God's word that was guided by the apostle Paul. But he was also a young man. Therefore, all young men that teach New Testament Christianity can benefit from the following wisdom of Paul given to the young man, Titus. Notice this sage advice to a young teacher: In all things showing thyself a pattern of good works. Young men, practice what you preach - be a good Christian example in all things, and at all times. Included in that pattern of good works we find the doctrine of uncorruptness - teach the pure word of God that is unadulterated by the human, worldly minds of mankind, and free from error that may corrupt the minds of others. Your uncorrupt teaching should be rendered with gravity (and) sincerity. God's message of eternal salvation through His Son, Christ Jesus, is the most serious, eternally-blessed message ever given. Therefore, it must not be taught in a frivolous manner that would lead one to believe that it is insignificant and of little value. It must be sincerely taught in a grave manner signifying the serious, eternal consequences of its message.

Young men, the word of God must be taught with sound speech, that cannot be condemned. To Timothy, another young preacher of the gospel of Christ, Paul had this similar admonition: hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love, which is in Christ Jesus (2 Tim. 1:13). Sound speech, teaching sound doctrine, may be exactly what is needed to make those, teaching the erring doctrine of men, ashamed of their self-serving, covetous ways, and leave them without opportunity to criticize or speak evil against you.

We close this lesson with another passage from Paul's letter to the young man, Timothy. If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; he is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself (1 Tim. 6:3-5). This, Paul says, is sound doctrine for young men, which cannot be denied by any man or woman that heeds the truths found in the Holy Word of God.