“In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works.” (Titus 2:7)
The Book of Titus was written to a young preacher by the Apostle Paul. And in this epistle are found many very instructive truths for people today. One of the subjects which Paul spent much time addressing was the matter of good works.
Paul began by revealing to Titus the Demand for Good Works: “In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works” (2:7). The child of God is expected to demonstrate a life characterized by good works. It is a command from the Scriptures that we, as believers, manifest a pattern of good works.
Then Paul continued by reminding Titus of the Desire for Good Works: “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us.…and purify.…a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (2:14). One of the reasons for our salvation is to conform us to the image of Christ “who went about doing good” (Acts 10:38). Paul expressed this truth in his letter to the church at Ephesus when he wrote, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).
The apostle was careful to remind Titus of the Disability of Good Works: “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us” (3:5). No matter how good a man’s works, good works cannot atone for sin nor attain salvation. Salvation is by grace through faith and cannot be earned by the efforts of man (Romans 3:20; Ephesians 2:8-9).
Paul then advised Titus about the Demonstration of Good Works: “These things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works” (3:8). In the life of a believer, good works are an outward demonstration of an inward change. A child of God is a new man (2 Corinthians 5:17), with new motives (Titus 3:1), and a new Master (James 2:14-20). The works which we do are a testimony to those watching that Christ has performed an internal work in our heart. We do good works, not to be saved, but because we have been saved.
In closing, Paul informed Titus about the Delight of Good Works: “Let ours also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful” (3:14). Good works accomplish two things: they bring good to men (3:8, 14), and they bring glory to God (Matthew 5:16).
Having been made aware of these truths concerning good works which the Apostle Paul communicated to Titus, let us go forth with the admonition ringing in our ears, “that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works” (3:8) and may we determine to “be ready to every good work” (3:1).
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Bro. Burcham serves as the Chairman of the Bible Department at Golden State Baptist College. Prior to coming to GSBC, he served as a missionary with his family in Japan for a number of years and then pastored in Missouri. Bro. Burcham also teaches an adult Sunday school class at NVBC.