For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds. These things speak and exhort and reprove with all authority. Let no one disregard you. (Titus 2:11-15)
Did you ever know that five verses could be packed full of so much great stuff?! After Travis and I came up with a vision and a name for our new website, we started searching our Bibles for a passage of Scripture that could serve as a theme verse, capturing and summarizing what it means to live with an eternal outlook. Travis came across Titus 2:11-15, read it to me, received my “Wow!” of approval, and moved forward with creating our site (which is still under construction, by the way). This being only a month ago, I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I had sort of forgotten about this amazing passage until this morning when I sat down to read the book of Titus. As I came to Titus 2:11, I saw line after line of highlighted text. Apparently, this passage had stood out to me before. The verses became familiar as I read them, and they again elicited from me an emphatic “Wow!” So now I’d like to give them a little more thought….
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men….
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (Ephesians 2:4-5, 8; John 3:16).
…instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires…
“Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. Do not love the world nor the things in the world. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 6:12-13; 1 John 2:15; Romans 12:2).
…and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age…
The word for ‘sensibly’ means “‘[with] self control, prudence, restraint.’ This emphasizes the believer’s relationship to himself, while ‘righteously’ deals with his relationships with other people. ‘Godly’ speaks of the Christian’s relationship to the Lord, though the qualities must not be separated” (Warren W. Wiersbe, The Wiersbe Bible Commentary). “The one who says he abides in [Jesus] ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked” (1 John 2:6).
…looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus…
“But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life” (Jude 20-21).
…who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession…
“And He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed” (1 Peter 2:24).
…zealous for good deeds….
“The one who desires life, to love and see good days, must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit. He must turn away from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and His ears attend to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil” (1 Peter 3:10-12).
These things speak and exhort and reprove with all authority. Let no one disregard you.
“Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe” (1 Timothy 4:12).
And so this is our goal: to show ourselves an example of those who believe as we live our lives with an eternal outlook. And if as our lives are reflected in cyberspace we can make a difference in someone else’s, then to God be the glory!