“Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness” Titus 1:1
Paul makes it very clear at the very beginning of his epistle to Titus what his relationship with God is as a slave. This is significant in that Paul is about to describe qualifications of Church elders, bishops and ministers.
The “servant of God” is one who willingly submits to God, it is not an indentured servant or some debt bondage. All relationships with God are of free will and of faith. It is in recognition of His supremacy in all things. Carnal man will resist submission. But literally submitting to God and His ways is submitting to the natural flow of things. The Godly condition is the natural condition. The interjection of the devil and sin created the unnatural man, the man God has been showing the way out of ever since Eden.
But this same slave and servant is also the minister. This concept of the servant/slave as the minister/priest was very confusing in Biblical times. Servant/priest was the position of Jesus Christ and confounded the people and offended the religious leaders.
Paul was also an apostle of Jesus Christ. Again in biblical times this was thought of as a position of godliness and authority. But in a real and practical since for Paul it simply means he was a teacher of the gospels. Paul served God by teaching the great news of Jesus Christ explicitly and thoroughly to all regardless of circumstance or consequence.
The Elect of God
“…according to the faith of God’s elect”. Faith is power, the Godly fuel that enables. “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:13), but only through faith in God and His ways.
God’s elect, the one’s who have responded to God’s call. “God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’ 1 Corinthians 1:9
“acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness”. Acknowledging the truth is a simple confession of faith in Jesus Christ. Simple yes but in this day and age it seems to be becoming more and more difficult. Jesus said to pick up your cross and follow me, which is nothing more than expressing Christ as your Savior. And just like Paul the slave, servant, teacher and preacher to confess that faith regardless of circumstance or consequence. This is a true description of a martyr.
“After godliness”, we are children of God, not of Satan. Godliness is our nature, our default position.
Post your comments below.