And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God, while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, will be revealed.
Titus 2:12-13, NLT*
Paul has been coaching Titus in how best to teach and shepherd the Christians in his care – for their personal growth, but also so that people around them will see God’s goodness. Their – and our – lives as Christians are to be positive reflections of God’s character and grace.
Because salvation is meant for everyone (verse 11), Christian conduct should show that Jesus is the way to salvation, freedom, and abundant life. In this context, it’s clear that Paul doesn’t call this world evil in the sense of judging and condemning the people still living without God. Paul wants his hearers to be beacons to attract those who still need rescue.
He wants us to live as lights for good, not with negative attitudes toward the not-yet-saved, but neither with lifestyles that suggest “godless living and sinful pleasures” are okay. Paul’s letters are filled with practical instruction on the sorts of attitudes and behaviours to embrace and to avoid, and he sums it up in today’s verses.
He’s calling us to holy living, and not with any kind of sour faces or legalism. No, looking forward in anticipation of Jesus’ return.
God our Saviour and our righteousness, forgive us for blending in with the world’s ungodly behaviour patterns. Show us where we need to change, and give us the courage to do so. You’ve promised to give us wisdom and to be our righteousness. Help us to receive and rely on Your provision. Draw us into a lifestyle of devotion to You and of hope in Your Son’s return. Thank You for being our light.
Today’s song is “Let it Be Known,” by Lincoln Brewster.
*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.