Five Core Principles That Should Guide A Believer’s Life & Service Today: Be Committed To God’s Means & God’s People
Pastor David L. Brown, Ph.D.
Sermon Delivered 11/27/05
In the first four verses of Titus, Paul shares Five Core Principles That Guided His Life and Service to the Lord. These five principles should be a model that should guide the life and ministry of every pastor and every believer. We have examined the first three of these five principles.
Paul identified himself first as "a servant of God" in verse 1. The word, translated servant, is the Greek word doulos and identifies a person who is a slave, and who has wholly devoted to the will and service of another. Paul was the doulos or servant of God. All Christians are to be the servants of God because, they are owned by God. They have been bought with a price. Paul made this celar to the Christians at Rome when he wrote, "being made free from sin" ye are "become the servants of God." Romans 6:22
God’s mission for believers’ focuses on three things –
We can be confidently committed to God’s message, the Gospel, because we serve a "God that cannot lie." He can be trusted completely. God is faithful to His Word. He laid Salvation’s plan "before the world began." Works are not a part of God’s Salvation plan. Christ is the only Savior.
In this message we will look at the fourth principle of Paul’s
life and ministry that we are to follow. We are to be…
Titus 1:3 "But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour."
The key word here is the word preaching which is a translation of the Greek word khrugmati – kergmati (kay’-roog-ma-tee), which is an old word, used of a person called a herald or public crier. Before newspapers, before public address systems, before radio or television, before the Internet the herald or public crier was employed by a ruler or town council to announce official proclamations to the public. My point is, God has chosen to make known (manifest) His Gospel by PREACHING! As Matthew Pool said it this way in his commentary – "He hath by setting up the ordinance of preaching, or publishing the gospel, by men sent by him, manifested this promise of eternal life…."
Right from the beginning of the New Testament, preaching was God plan to get His message out. John the Baptist preached that Jesus, the Savior of Israel would soon come and pointed Him out (Acts 13:24; John 1:36). Jesus preached. We read in Matthew 4:17 "From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." The Apostles preached and taught the people -- Acts 5:42 "And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ." Portions of Peter’s sermons are recorded throughout the New Testament. Let’s look at the one found in Acts 10:34-43. Stephen, one of the first deacons, preached and was martyred because of it. It begins in Acts 7:2, but we will pick it up in verse 51 to 60. Paul said, "…woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!" 1 Corinthians 9:16
Listen Christians. God’s means of getting out His message is by preaching the Word. But that is not happening in many American Churches! There is a spiritual famine in America today and Christians are suffering from spiritual malnutrition because they are eating "junk food" that contains all kinds of unnatural substitutes. They get drama instead of preaching. They get rock band music instead of preaching. They get comedy instead of preaching. They get dancing instead of preaching. And the preaching they do get is watered down, filled with fluff. It is the belief of the seeker friendly crowd that preaching should be warm and fuzzy and not ruffle anyone’s feathers.
That is NOT what the New Testament calls for. Paul wrote this to a young preacher in 2 Timothy 4:1-5 "I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. 5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry."
Let’s look at some sermon portions.
ü Acts 5:30b-33 "We ought to obey God rather than men. 30 The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. 31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. 32 And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him. 33 When they heard that, they were cut to the heart, and took counsel to slay them."
ü Acts 7:51 "Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye."
ü Acts 17:22-31 is another good illustration.
The only way to combat spiritual malnutrition is to preach the whole counsel of God. That is what preachers are to feed the flock. This was Paul’s passion. Turn to Acts 20:26-28 "Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. 27 For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. 28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood."
If you ever have to search for a church, your
first priority should be the preaching. Christians should be
committed to the preaching of God’s Word, above all else. Now, we
move on to the fifth and last point.
"To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour." Titus 1:4
Paul calls Titus his gnhsiw teknw – gnesio tekno (gnay’-see-oi tek’noi), that is my "true son after the common faith." The phrase indicates that Paul had led Titus to the Lord. The phrase common faith reinforces that Paul had been the means of converting Titus by preaching that gospel which was received by all who were Christians.
When you read Paul’s letters, it is clear that he genuinely loved his fellow believers and he desired that they have a deeper walk with the Lord.
We are to be committed to our brothers and sisters in Christ. We are to…
In conclusion, we have studied the 5 core principles that guided Paul’s life. We need to incorporate these into our lives as well.
Be Committed To God’s Authority – v.1a
Be Committed To God’s Mission – vs. 1b-2a
Be Committed To God’s Message – vs. 2b-3a
Be Committed To God’s Means – 3b
Be Committed To God’s People – v. 4