1 Paul, a bond-servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of God’s elect and the knowledge of the truth that leads to1 godliness, 2 in the hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the world began,2 3 and which at the proper time3 He brought to light in His word,4 through the proclamation of the Gospel that was entrusted to me5 according to the commandment of God our Savior—4 to Titus, a true son in our common faith:
Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.
The Urgent Need of Qualified Elders
5 I left you in Crete for this reason, that you might set in order the matters that were left undone, and appoint elders in every city, as I commanded you. 6 A man is qualified if he is blameless,6 if he is the husband of one wife, and if he has trustworthy7 children who are not accused of dissipation or insubordination. 7 For as a steward of God’s possessions, an overseer must be above reproach: not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to drink, not pugnacious, not greedy for dishonest gain, 8 but hospitable, zealous for what is good, sensible, upright, devout,7 self-controlled,8 9 and holding firmly to the trustworthy word just as it was taught to him,9 so that he is able both to exhort and encourage with sound doctrine, and to refute those who speak against it.
10 For there are many rebellious men, idle talkers and deceivers—especially among the circumcision—11 whose mouths must be stopped, who are subverting entire households, teaching things they should not for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 One of them, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, and lazy gluttons.” 13 This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, 14 paying no attention whatsoever to Jewish myths and the commandments of men who turn away from the truth. 15 To the pure all things are pure; but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and their conscience are defiled. 16 They profess to know God, but in their actions they deny him, since they are10 detestable, disobedient, and unfit for any good work.
- Lit. that accords with
- Lit. before times eternal
- Lit. in His (or its) own seasons
- Lit. and He manifested his word
- Lit. by a proclamation with which I was entrusted
- Lit. If any man is above reproach, etc.
- Or possibly believing
- Or pure
- Lit. according to the teaching
- Lit. being
Portrait of a Well-taught Church
2 But as for you, speak of the qualities that go hand in hand with sound teaching:1 2 namely, that older men must be temperate, dignified, sensible, and sound in faith, love, and endurance. 3 Likewise, older women must be reverent in their conduct, neither malicious gossips nor slaves of much wine, but instead teachers of what is good, 4 so that they can train2 the younger women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 and to be sensible, chaste, devoted to home-making, good, and submissive to their own husbands, so that the word of God may not fall into reproach. 6 Likewise, urge the young men to be sensible and self-controlled, 7 in every respect presenting3 your life4 as a model of good works. In your teaching you must demonstrate integrity, sobriety, 8 and sound instruction that is above criticism, so that he who opposes you may be put to shame,5 finding nothing evil to say about us. 9 Urge slaves to be submissive to their own masters in all things, and to be well pleasing,6 neither talking back 10 nor pilfering, but instead showing all good fidelity, so that they may adorn the teaching of God our Savior in every respect.
Lessons of the Grace of God
11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, 12 instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires, and to live sensibly, righteously, and devoutly in the present evil age, 13 eagerly watching for our blessed hope: the appearing7 of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless act and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good works.
15 Speak of these things, and exhort, refute, and convict with all authority. Let no one despise or disregard you.
- Lit. the things that accord with sound instruction
- Or admonish
- Or and self-controlled in every respect, displaying
- Lit. yourself
- Or possibly at a loss
- Or own masters, to be well pleasing in every respect
- Lit. looking for the blessed hope and (or even) appearing of
Lifestyle of the Heirs of Grace
3 Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, 2 to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable and gentle, showing perfect courtesy1 to all men. 3 For at one time we ourselves were also foolish, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5 He saved us, not because of deeds that we had done in righteousness, but according to His own mercy, through the washing of regeneration and the renewing work of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He richly poured out upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by His grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. 8 This saying is trustworthy, and I want you constantly and confidently to affirm these things, so that those who have believed in God will be careful to engage in good works.2 Such things are both excellent and beneficial for men. 9 But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and feuds and arguments about the Law, for they all are unprofitable and worthless. 10 Reject a divisive man after the first and second warning, 11 understanding full well that such a person is warped and engaging in sin, and that he stands self-condemned.3
Concluding Instructions and Blessing
12 When I send Artemas or Tychicus to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, for I have decided to spend the winter there. 13 As for Zenas the lawyer and Apollos, make every effort to speed them on their journey, making sure they lack nothing. 14 And let our people also learn to engage in good deeds,2 and especially to meet pressing needs, so that they will not be unfruitful.
15 All who are with me greet you. Greet those who love us in the faith. Grace be with you all. Amen.
- Or every consideration; lit. all humility, mildness
- Or devoting themselves to good works
- Lit. sinning, being self-condemned