Teach and Model Godliness
Part 3 continued from November 4th
We must be cautious of any intemperance; and “not be given to” too much of anything, be it the use of money, the enjoyment of leisure, or the establishment of a house to live in. Whatever we do is to be tempered by the glory of God. He must be the object and focus of all we do. 1 Corinthians 10:31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. NKJV
“Modern society has elevated fashion almost to the point of idolatry. Clothing stores, newspaper and magazine advertising, and television commercials are like giant billboards that continually proclaim, “We covet clothes.”
Expensive, often ostentatious jewelry for both men and women is becoming more and more prevalent as a means to flaunt material prosperity and glorify self. We are continually goaded to put our bodies and apparel on parade.
Godly women are Spirit-controlled in every part of their life. They resist excess in any area of daily life. They are not slaves to any substance, any amusement, any fashion, or any attitude that does not please their Master in Heaven.
Godly women live as a priest for God; with guarded tongues; and no excesses. Godly women seek to be reverent in their behavior, careful in all their conversations, and never enslaved to anything but Christ.
v. 3d “teachers of good things” (4) with visible integrity
The fourth type of godly behavior in Titus two women is spiritual integrity--godly women live what they teach. They train others in the pattern they have learned. Their walk speaks louder than their talk.
Their life is daily placed under God’s control in all areas: their tongues, their appetites, and their habits. They do not overindulge themselves, they are not overweight gluttons, they are not pleasure-hungry, and they are not malicious talkers.
These godly older women were noble in everything, and in the way they lived life they taught by their actions what is good!
Titus 2:3 Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. NIV
Paul always stressed preaching and teaching what he was already living. In his instructions to Timothy he said:
1 Timothy 4:16 Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things; for as you do this you will insure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you. NASB
Titus was to encourage these older women to develop a ministry of teaching younger women what is good.
Younger women with children were to keep their primary focus at home (see Titus 2:4-5), but the older women would do well to reach outside their homes and share what they had learned with those who would profit from it most.
A godly woman teaches by her life what is good in God’s sight. She carefully chooses the “better part” as Mary did in contrast to Martha. Titus two women see every area of their lives as an open book that should and does teach Christ's gracious Lordship. They can say as Paul did in 1 Corinthians 11:1 “Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.” NKJV
And who is an older woman? Technically, in this passage it was a woman who was past raising her children. Some commentators even say the age of sixty, as Paul does in the widow’s list of I Timothy 5. But in reality there is no chronological age given.
For every woman in this church there are some older and some younger. To those older, you are to look and see if they are an example of Christ—if they are, ask them to show you what they have learned and how they do it. For those who are younger, you are to seek to get into their lives and help them bring every area of their lives under the gracious Lordship of Jesus Christ.
Every young lady and woman in this church should have as their highest desire the goal of being first a Titus two student of some godly older in-the-faith woman. And, the highest honor, the greatest goal in the life of every older woman in this church is to have the honor of being that older woman-in-the-faith.
If you have children, that is where you must start. If they are grown and gone, ask God to begin filling your lives with younger women into whom you can prayerfully pour the love and wisdom of Christ gleaned from His Word and by your years of walking in the Spirit!
Every godly woman has the opportunity to teach the younger generation of women in the church. This instruction is to occur in informal settings, such as one on one, small groups, or women’s Bible studies. And this instruction is both by word and example. Many young women today were not raised under a biblical family model. That’s a challenge for the older women in the church.
Godly women seek to be reverent in their behavior, careful in all their conversations, never enslaved to anything but Christ, and teaching by example the way to follow Christ.
Godly women live as a priest for God; with guarded tongues; and no excesses; with visible integrity.
v.4a “that they admonish” (5) as earnest mentors
This one word is variously rendered into four different English words by the top four versions: “teach” (KJV); “admonish” (NKJV); “train” (NIV); and “encourage” (NAS). The context and the word imply that this was to be a process of teaching, explaining, encouraging, training, and holding the young wives to a standard that was unfamiliar to them and yet vital for the success of their marriages and families.
One of the strongest forces for spiritual ministry in the local church lies with the older believers. Those who are retired have time for service. It is vital that we mobilize and use these important people. In my own 30 years of pastoral ministry, I have been constantly helped and encouraged by godly older saints who knew how to pray, how to teach God's Word, visit, troubleshoot, and help edify Christ's church.
In teaching what is good they “encourage the young women” (Titus 2:4). This opening phrase of Titus 2:4 “that they admonish” is one Greek word in Paul’s letter, the word is sophronizo and means, “to train someone in self-control, restore to senses, admonish and exhort earnestly.”
“You will note the similarity of this form to characteristics of elders, “prudent” (1 Tim. 3:2), and older men, “sensible” (Titus 2:2). Older women are to train the younger women to learn the art of self-restraint. This training process requires that you older women be committed to being responsible, confrontive, and affirming in an ongoing relationship with a younger woman.”
This sermon will continue tomorrow November 6th as we continue looking at the first four spiritual qualities.
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