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Rays of Light Bible Lessons by Keith Holder

CONSTANTLY AFFIRM FAITHFUL SAYINGS

Titus 3:8-9 This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they, which have believed in God, might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men. But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.

The things previously written to Titus in this letter are all faithful sayings. They are the Holy Spirit-inspired words of God. Paul told Titus that they must be taught and affirmed constantly, with all the strength and ability he possesses. Why? They must be affirmed constantly and consistently because they contain the teaching, doctrine, and commandments of God, that leads lost men and women of the world to the hope of eternal life in heaven. Who among us, as obedient Christians, has any less responsibility than did Titus to teach all people of the earth, that are spiritually deficient and they need to hear, believe, accept as their own, the words of God, and His plan of eternal salvation through His Son, Christ Jesus?

In His word we find this to be true: the gospel message of eternal salvation available through Jesus Christ, the Son of God, must be taught, with whatever talent that lies within us, not only to the entire world around us, but it is also necessary to continually teach it to the household of faith - to all members of the church of Christ. And why is it necessary to teach these faithful sayings to Christians? Paul gives us the answer: that they, which have believed in God, might be careful to maintain good works. Here, again, we find God's doctrine regarding the necessity of faith and good works. It is not sufficient in the eyes of God to accept Him, as our Creator and the Author of eternal salvation, neither is it sufficient to believe and accept His Son, Jesus Christ as the Messiah, the Savior of the world. This belief in God and Jesus Christ is necessary, but Christians must also be careful to maintain good works.

The good works required of all Christians are not limited to acts of love toward God exemplified by an honest, holy, righteous conduct of life, but they also include good works of love that are demonstrated toward our fellow Christians, families, friends, and neighbors, by freely given deeds of comfort, kindness, and charity. As children of God, we must maintain good works. The meaning here is that good works of a Christian is something that is done, not casually or when an extreme need obviously comes to our attention, but rather they are to be done constantly by continually searching for, and recognizing, the needs of others, and filling that need to the best of our abilities. We are to seek out those whose burdens of life are too heavy for them to bear alone. When physically capable, Christians are, not only to bear their own burdens of life, but God also requires that, where needful, we are to help bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ (See Gal. 6:2-5).

Also, as Christian teachers of the gospel message of Jesus, we are to avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law. Understanding the extreme state of Jewish influence, idolatry, and social degradation that existed on the island of Crete, at the time Paul wrote this letter to Titus, this message certainly needed to be taught to the church of Christ that was planted there. In a like manner, this same teaching was evidently needed in the church of Christ in Ephesus, to which the young preacher, Timothy was ministering (See 1 Tim. 1:4; 2 Tim. 2:23). And it is certainly this same message is as appropriate in today's society as it was then, and needs to be universally taught to all bodies of Christ, to the same extent as it was during the days of Titus' teaching on the isle of Crete.

These argumentative topics should be excluded from the gospel message of Jesus Christ because they are unprofitable and vain. Not only are they of no value in our individual Christian obedience to God, but adding to, eliminating from, or disregarding any portion of God's will is destructive, and brings about strife, contentions, and divisions within the body of Christ. One has only to examine the creeds and worship services of denominational religious bodies today, in order to realize just how unprofitable and vain the gospel message of salvation has deviated from the word of God.

It is the God-given responsibility of preachers, teachers, and each member of the body of Christ to constantly affirm these faithful sayings!