In the attempt to throw off the authority of a sovereign God they suffered a number of consequences, one of which included this new battle for dominance in the home. As God ordained the home and gave equal yet distinct roles to the husband and wife, now as a result of sin and the curse, Eve had a desire to rule over her husband, and Adam learned quickly how to become a despotic and harsh master. And the fight was on.
Part of this battle has spilled over into the church. Where God has ordained specific roles unique to men and women, in our sinfulness (even when good intentions lead the way) we fight to cast of the Biblical restraints placed upon us so that we might be free to serve God as we please, instead of serving God as He pleases. In studying God’s design for the family and the church, the Scriptures speak plainly to the roles God has created for us to fill as men and as women. In revolt to that plain teaching we distort the Word, appeal to cultural context, accuse the authors (and AUTHOR) of Scripture of being outdated and out of touch with the politically correct reality of our day and time.
Thankfully the Biblical ideals for the roles for men and women are being recovered in many segments of the church today. However, as seems to always be the case, there are factions that go too far the other way when reacting to error. Where the church is in error, some over-correct. As Luther so aptly put it, when you try to help a drunk get into the saddle he will invariably fall off the other side.
Our text in Titus 2 addresses, again, quite plainly, the fact that women are supposed to be teaching in the church! Now remember, in context, Paul is telling Titus what characteristics and qualities will be evident in the lives of church members when they are hearing, believing, and obeying sound doctrine. We started last Sunday with the qualities that demonstrate that the older men in the church are sound in the faith. Now, this week, in looking at Titus 2:3-5, we see the qualities for women.
…the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— 4 that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.
This is not a list of dos and don’ts. It is a lifestyle that flows from a heart and mind that is saturated with good healthy doctrine. And part of those qualities for women in the church is that they are to be teaching good things. The good things they teach apply directly to the younger women in the church. And for some reason these good things seem to be quite controversial. As already mentioned, most of the controversy is sparked by an over-reaction from both sides of the discussion, so this week we will attempt to seek and find a little balance by examining the text closely.
We need to stop over-reacting and jumping to conclusions and start taking the time to read and understand what God tells us in His Word. So what do these things mean when it comes to the “Qualities for Women” in the church? Set your assumptions and preconceptions aside and join us this Sunday, June 5, for the next message in our series from Titus titled “Qualities of a Sound Church.”