Feb 12, 2023. Titus 2:9-10

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BLOOM WHERE YOU SPROUT. Titus 2:9-10. 02/12/2023. #6.

9 Exhort bondservants to be obedient to their own masters, to be well pleasing in all things, not answering back, 10 not pilfering, but showing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.

1. Roman reality

                a. 1/3rd of the Roman Empire were slaves

                                a1. The Gospel took strong root among the slave population

                                a2. Coming to Christ did not change their status as slaves

                b. Often, a Christian slave would be owned by a

                     Christian master

                                a1. This was inconsistent with faith, but it occurred frequently

                                a2. Just as Joseph was enslaved to Potiphar, many believers were also in bondage

2. Better and not bitter

                a. Paul urges the slave not to be bitter about their bondage, but use it as a means of testimony

                                a1. 2 Kn. 5 Naaman’s Israelite slave girl pointed Naaman to Elisha for healing

                                a2. A slave pulled Jeremiah out of the cistern and one found a wife for Isaac

                b. 1 COR. 7:17-24 – Paul stated that it didn’t matter what our earthly state is (bond/free, rich/

                     poor, strong/weak, sound/infirmed…)

                                a1. These are temporary situations that will have no bearing on eternity

                                a2. To spend time fretting over our earthly situation lacks faith, fortitude, and obedience to out calling

                c. Instead fretting over earthly conditions, be a testimony where you are (God uniquely places you in path of people others do not have)

3. Principles of longsuffering

                a. There was a tendency for slaves to shirk the responsibilities given to them, steal, badmouth their masters, and undermine the master’s interests

                                a1. A bitterness of being enslaved

                                a2. Dwelling on injustice and hurt of a situation is natural to one victimized

                b. Paul called upon slaves to be obedient to masters

                                a1. This is counterintuitive to our nature

                                a2. No one in a position not of their own making is there by accident (God has a purpose)

                                a3. Paul urges the slave to be the best slave possible (honest, cheerful, faithful, helpful, obedient, responsive, and loyal)

                                a4. The Lord wants to use us where we are and he will move us if and when he chooses to

                c. Principles of circumstances:

                                a1. 1 Cor. 10:13 as with Moses, Daniel, and Nehemiah, God ordains our condition

                                a2. Rom. 8:28 an obedient believer will be used of the Lord to bring good out of bad situations

                                a3. 1 Pt. 4 many great saints have suffered abuse, infirmities, and severe trials

                                a4. Instead of seeking to escape a situation that is inescapable, seek how God can use you as a testimony in the situation

                                a5. It is the joyful saint under pressure that produces the greatest testimony of faith

                d. A bad boss, poor health, great loss, reversal of fortunes, or sore disappointments are tests of our faith and commitment

                                a1. Job was sorely tested, but not crushed

                                a2. Joseph became the best slave and then prisoner, even though he was innocent

                e. We must ask how we could be used of the Lord in a trial, rather than why we have the trial

                                a1. If we can’t solve or escape, we must cope

                                a2. Given a cross to bear, bear it well

Key Verse: 1 Corinthians 7:17-24

17 But as God has distributed to each one, as the Lord has called each one, so let him walk. And so I ordain in all the churches. 18 Was anyone called while circumcised? Let him not become uncircumcised. Was anyone called while uncircumcised? Let him not be circumcised. 19 Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing, but keeping the commandments of God is what matters. 20 Let each one remain in the same calling in which he was called. 21 Were you called while a slave? Do not be concerned about it; but if you can be made free, rather use it. 22 For he who is called in the Lord while a slave is the Lord’s freedman. Likewise he who is called while free is Christ’s slave. 23 You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men. 24 Brethren, let each one remain with God in that state in which he was called.