Continuing our devotional study in Titus 2, Paul challenged Titus to remind the “aged men” in the churches to be examples of six traits of spiritual maturity:
Titus 2:2 – “That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.”
We have considered the first three traits, “sober, grave, temperate”, and continue today with the remaining three defined as “sound”, meaning uncorrupt, true in doctrine (Titus 2:3). Paul exhorted Titus to challenge the older men in the churches to be “sound in faith…[sound in] charity…[and sound in] patience”. Let us briefly consider those traits in order.
Older men who are “sound in faith” will not be easily shaken in their trust in God’s sovereignty and plan for their lives. They know the Truth, believe the Truth and have lived the Truth. They are men of God’s Word who have evidenced an unwavering confidence in the will and Word of God. They have known troubles, trials and sorrows, but have found the LORD is faithful (Psalm 23).
The older men were to be sound in “charity”, revealing a self-sacrificing, serving, active love for others. Apart from the LORD, older men of the world tend to become unhappy, self-centered, and often depressed. When the strength of youth fades, often an unhealthy self-pity takes hold. Apart from the LORD, it is almost inevitable that a bitter, lonely spirit will take hold on a man’s soul. The old saints were to be “sound in charity”…”patient, kind, humble, serving others, rejoicing in the Truth, enduring, believing, and overflowing with hope (1 Corinthians 13:4-8). As the LORD is gracious, kind and forgiving, so should be the saints of the LORD (Ephesians 4:32).
Finally, the older men were to be “sound in patience”. They had known sorrows and disappointments. They had borne the loss of loved ones and the rebellion of children. They had suffered and been mocked for their faith; however, as their bodies grew weaker with the frailty of old age, their faith grew stronger.
I close with a question for my readers who are numbered among the aged, mature men of the church: Are the six traits of spiritual maturity listed in Titus 2:2 true of your life? Are you “sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience”? Those are not suggestions, but mandates.
What greater testimony could you take to your grave than that you were “sound”; steadfast, unwavering in your faith, love, and patience?
James 1:2-4 – My brethren, count [deem; consider] it all joy when ye fall [surrounded; encounter] into divers [various] temptations [trials; adversities; troubles]; 3 Knowing this, that the trying [proving; testing] of your faith [assurance; belief; profession] worketh [accomplishes; works out; produces] patience [endurance; steadfastness; perseverance]. 4 But let patience [endurance; steadfastness; perseverance] have her perfect work [labor], that ye may be perfect [complete; full; lacking nothing] and entire [whole; sound; complete], wanting [lacking] nothing [i.e. spiritually mature].
Copyright 2016 – Travis D. Smith