Feb 26, 2023 I Titus 3:1-3

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A MODEL CITIZEN. Titus 3:1-3. 02/26/2023. #8

Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, 2 to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men. 3 For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another.

1. Obedience to rulers and government officials

                a. Paul had more difficult with hostile governments than almost any man who ever lived (II Corinthians 11)

                b. Yet, Paul emphasized submission to authority

                                a1. Romans 13:1-7 government is God-ordained for the protection of its citizens

                                a2. Even when the known world was conquered by Rome, men were to submit to that authority (God used Rome to spread Gospel)

                                a3. Matthew 22:17-22 Jesus said to render to Caesar the things that belong to Caesar

                                a4. Acts 23:5 Paul rebuked himself for “speaking evil of the Lord’s anointed”

                c. God has given us 4 basic authorities:

                                a1. Family (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:1-4)

                                a2. God (via church) – Hebrews 13:7, 17, I Timothy 3

                                a3. Government (Romans 13)

                                a4. Employer or master (Ephesians 6:5)

                d. We are to obey the government’s laws, pay taxes, and show due respect for authorities

                                a1. Even if a government is corrupt, they must be respected and obeyed as authorities

                                a2. Daniel 2:20-21 no authority holds office without the allowance of God to do so

2. The exception clause

                a. John 19 Jesus submitted to the judgment of the High Priest and Pilate, but not to their demands (disobeyed command to agree that he was not God)

                b. Acts 5, Peter and John refused to stop preaching about Christ at orders of the Sanhedrin

                c. God is the authority above all authorities and must be obeyed first when there is a conflict between them

                                a1. This is the reason for persecution and martyrdom (hatred of God)

                                a2. John 3:19 men, like Satan, hate the light

                d. There is often a high price to pay to serve God (1 Peter 4)

3. Respectful noncompliance

                a. Paul states that when we serve God through disobeying unrighteous dictates of officials, we still

                     must remain humble and respectful

                                a1. This is a difficult challenge

                                a2. Our flesh wants to strike back against our abusers and blasphemers of God

                                a3. It is the kind, gracious, loving response that provides a testimony of God’s grace and love

                b. It is hard not to speak evil of evil men (to mock, ridicule, and disparage them)

                                a1. Matthew 23 Jesus in his authority pronounced judgment on the Pharisees

                                a2. Peter and Jude warned of false evil teachers

                c. In their condemning of evil men, Jesus, Paul, Jude, and Peter did not profane the names of who they condemned (they focused on their actions and motivations)

                                a1. They were not gossips or vindictive

                                a2. Only when severe rebuke was necessary did they use terms like “you serpents”, “you whited tombs”, “that old fox”, …

                                a3. They did not respond in kind to their persecutors

                d. Paul states that we are not to fight them (a macho, Spanish word macho, machismo = an aggressive

                     viral male)

                                a1. As Christ and apostles submitted, so are we

                                a2. Can defend self from attack, but not law

                e. We are to remain meek even before tormentor

                f. Matthew 5:45 love those who hate and abuse you

Key verse: Romans 13:1-7

1 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. 4 For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. 5 Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. 7 Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.