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Paul's Exhortations & Instructions to Brother Titus Volume 25
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Paul Reminds Titus of what we should not do because of the Grace of God Given to Us
Titus 3:9 But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain. KJV
Now Paul reminds Brother Titus and we true believers of every era and generation of what we should not be doing, with these words, "But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain." (Titus 3:9) (KJV). The English word 'avoid' is translated by the Greek word periistēmi which means basically the same as our English definition which is to keep away from: - avoid, shun, or stand aloof from. The English word 'genealogies' is translated by the Greek word genealogia which means tracing by generations ones ancestry. When Paul writes, 'foolish questions', he is referring to things of no benefit or usefulness in the matter of the Gospel of the Grace of God and whether or not a sinner is saved by hearing and believing the Gospel. These stupid useless questions about all sorts of silly nonsense only left people to wander away from what was then and is still now and forever will be and that is that human beings are sinners period and their only hope for restoration, redemption, and resurrection life is found in our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ.
Here is what Adam Clarke wrote concerning these 'foolish questions' and genealogies so often spoke of amongst the Jews, "In these the Jews particularly delighted; they abounded in the most frivolous questions; and, as they had little piety themselves, they were solicitous to show that they had descended from godly ancestors. Of their frivolous questions, and the answers given to them by the wisest and most reputable of their rabbins, the following is a specimen: - Rabbi Hillel was asked: Why have the Babylonians round heads? To which he answered: This is a difficult question, but I will tell the reason: Their heads are round because they have but little wit. Why are the eyes of the Tarmudians so soft? Because they inhabit a sandy country. Why have the Africans broad feet? Because they inhabit a marshy country. But ridiculous and trifling as these are, they are little in comparison to those solemnly proposed and most gravely answered by those who are called the schoolmen. These, with many thousands of others, of equal use to religion and common sense, may be found in their writings. See the Summa of Thomas Aquinas, passim. Might not the Spirit have these religious triflers in view, rather than the less ridiculous Jews?"
When Paul writes, 'and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain', he means specifically the Jewish Talmud which is the collection of ancient rabbinic writings on Jewish law and tradition (the Mishna and the Gemara) that constitute the basis of religious authority in Orthodox Judaism. The Apostle Paul knew very well what he spoke of here in regard to the many contentions and strivings that went on concerning the Talmud, for he was once one of those (as a Pharisee and a member of the Sanhedrin) participating in much of the striving and contending. The English word 'contentions' is translated by the Greek word eris meaning a quarrel, that is, (by implication) wrangling: - contention, debate, strife, variance. The English word 'strivings' is translated by the Greek word machē meaning a battle, that is, (figuratively) controversy: - fighting, strive, striving. In other words, all the minutia found in the Jewish Talmud (put there by sinful Jewish Rabbi') created reasons for striving and contending about these useless and profitless man made rules, rituals, and regulations that had no Divine Authority or Power with them, but the Gospel of the Grace of God (which each one of us born again believers have received and are continuing to receive) has the Divine Power of God the Father, God the Son (Jesus Christ) and God the Holy Spirit with it to do what ever it is that the will of God decrees, declares, and determines to be done in His Name and for His Glory, therefore, the old Jewish traditions and minutia is obselete under the grace of God.
This is whay Paul declares them to be 'unprofitable', that is, useless and 'vain', that is, empty or without any value whatsoever. Here is what Matthew Henry wrote concerning the contentions and strivings about the law being worthless and vain, "There were those who were for the Mosaic rites and ceremonies, and would have them continued in the Church, though by the Gospel and the coming of Christ they were superseded and done away. Titus must give no countenance to these, but avoid and oppose them; for they are unprofitable and vain: this is to be referred to all those foolish questions and genealogies, as well as those strivings about the law. They are so far from instructing and building up in godliness, that they are hindrances of it rather: the Christian religion, and good works, which are to be maintained, will hereby be weakened and prejudiced, the peace of the Church disturbed, and the progress of the Gospel hindered. Observe, Ministers must not only teach things good and useful, but shun and oppose the contrary, what would corrupt the faith, and hinder godliness and good works; nor should people have itching ears, but love and embrace sound doctrine, which tends most to the use of edifying."
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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