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Paul's Exhortations & Instructions to Brother Titus Volume 22
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Paul Reminds Titus of what the Grace of God our Savior Did
Titus 3:4-5 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; KJV Note: (CEV) = Contemporary English Version
Paul now reminds Brother Timothy and everyone of us who are truly born again believers in our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ exactly what the grace of God did to make us into new creatures or new creations (2 Corinthians 5:17) first with these words, "But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared," (Titus 3:4) (KJV). It was God the Father's kindness and love toward sinful rebellious humanity that compelled Him to send our Lord Jesus Christ to suffer our penalty for sin and pay our sin debt in full in order to make us right with Him now and for all eternity. Sinful humanity can never come to or approach God the Father without the intercessor between God and man Christ Jesus (1 Timothy 2:5). The English word 'kindness' is translated by the Greek word chrēstotēs meaning usefulness, that is, moral excellence (in character or demeanor): - gentleness, goodness, kindness. The English phrase 'love of God our Saviour toward man' is translated by these two Greek words, the first is, philanthrōpia meaning fondness of mankind, that is, benevolence (philanthropy): - kindness, love towards man. The second Greek word is sōtēr meaning a deliverer, that is, God or Christ: - Saviour. In other words, the Divine One has such fondness or affection for mankind (even though man rebelled against Him) that His goodness and gentleness toward man prompted Him to provide man a way back into right relationship with Him, that being, through the shed blood of Christ Jesus our Lord our deliverer, that is, the One who rescues us sinners from harm and danger, which would be spending eternity in hell and the lake of fire (Revelation 20:14-15).
The English word 'appeared' is translated by the Greek word epiphainō meaning to shine upon, that is, become (literally) visible or (figuratively) known: - appear, give light. In other words, the love of God toward man was manifested and made visible in the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ as it is written by the Apostle John with these words, "The Word became a human being and lived here with us. We saw His true glory, the glory of the only Son of the Father. From Him all the kindness and all the truth of God have come down to us." (John 1:14) (CEV). Here is what Adam Clarke had to say about this verse, "We may understand the essential goodness of the Divine nature; that which is the spring whence all kindness, mercy, and beneficence proceed. Love toward man - Philanthropy. It is to be regretted that this attribute of the Divine nature, as it stands in relation to man, should have been entirely lost by a paraphrastical translation. Philanthropy is a character which God gives here to Himself; while human nature exists, this must be a character of the Divine nature. God loves man; He delighted in the idea when formed in His own infinite mind, He formed man according to that idea, and rejoiced in the work of His hands; when man fell, the same love induced Him to devise His redemption, and God the Savior flows from God the Philanthropist. Where love is it will be active, and will show itself. So the philanthropy of God appeared, it shone out, in the incarnation of Jesus Christ, and in His giving His life for the life of the world."
Because all of our gratitude, that is, thankfulness and appreciation should at all times go to our Lord Jesus Christ alone, for without His acceptance of us even when we hated and despised Him, He died in our place taking on Himself the punishment for our sins, but now for us it is like this, as it is written by the Apostle Paul to the Church @ Rome, "Christ died for us at a time when we were helpless and sinful. No one is really willing to die for an honest person, though someone might be willing to die for a truly good person. But God showed how much He loved us by having Christ die for us, even though we were sinful. But there is more! Now that God has accepted us because Christ sacrificed His life's blood, we will also be kept safe from God's anger. Even when we were God's enemies, He made peace with us, because His Son died for us. Yet something even greater than friendship is ours. Now that we are at peace with God, we will be saved by His Son's life." (Romans 5:6-10) (CEV). This is why Paul writes these words in the very next verse to Brother Titus reminding him once more of the love of God for Him and for all of us lost sinners who have been found by the grace of God, fortunate to receive the grace of God, and favored by the grace of God, "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;" (Titus 3:5) (KJV).
When Paul writes, 'not by works of righteousness which we have done', he means not by anything good that is in any sinner that is saved, for again as it written by this same Apostle to the Church @ Rome with these piercing, punishing, and penetrating words, "The Scriptures tell us, No one is acceptable to God! Not one of them understands or even searches for God. They have all turned away and are worthless. There isn't one person who does right." (Romans 3:10-12) (CEV). So, I say to everyone, when you see that sweet, adorable, cuddly little baby girl or baby boy born and you think they are so good, remember these words, for they are not born innocent and good, instead they are born guilty and bad. Question: When can any loving parent declare that they taught there little toddler to lie? Answer: Never. They were born knowing how to be bad. When Paul next writes these words then, 'but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost', he means that our redemption is all done by the supernatural power of God the Holy Spirit. The English word 'mercy' is translated by the Greek word eleos meaning active divine compassion. The English word 'saved' is translated by the Greek word sōzō meaning safe; to save, that is, deliver or protect (literally or figuratively): - heal, preserve, make whole. The little English phrase 'of regeneration' is translated by the Greek word paliggenesia meaning (spiritual) rebirth (the state or the act), that is, (figuratively) spiritual renovation; specifically Messianic restoration: - regeneration. This is why our Lord Jesus Christ said these words to Nicodemus one of the most devout religious Jews during that time, "Jesus replied, 'I tell you for certain that you must be born from above before you can see God's kingdom!' Nicodemus asked, 'How can a grown man ever be born a second time?' Jesus answered: 'I tell you for certain that before you can get into God's kingdom, you must be born not only by water, but by the Spirit.'" (John 3:3-5) (CEV). Here is what John Wesley had to say about this verse, "In this important passage the Apostle presents us with a delightful view of our redemption. Herein we have, The cause of it; not our works or righteousness, but 'the kindness and love of God our Saviour.' The effects; which are, Justification; 'being justified,' pardoned and accepted through the alone merits of Christ, not from any desert in us, but according to His own mercy, 'by His grace," His free, unmerited goodness. Sanctification, expressed by the laver of regeneration, (that is, baptism, the thing signified, as well as the outward sign,) and the renewal of the Holy Ghost; which purifies the soul, as water cleanses the body, and renews it in the whole image of God. The consummation of all; - that we might become heirs of eternal life, and live now in the joyful hope of it."
If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...
Sincerely in Christ,
Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…
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