This is the third of the Pastoral Epistles which Paul wrote, the others being I and II Timothy. He wrote this letter to Titus who was working in the church on the Island of Crete.
As the Holy Spirit led Paul to write about the unity of the church in Christ, he did so in two ways. First, he explained the unity from a doctrinal point of view by setting forth God’s sovereignty over the establishment of the church. In the second way, he dealt with the life of the church as she expresses her unity in a common bond of faith in Christ Jesus.
In the opening statement, “The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, until the day in which He was taken up” (Acts 1:1-2), Luke makes obvious reference to the Gospel that he had already written. Now he proceeds to write about the things that Jesus continues to do. The Holy Spirit was given to the church, and in His strength the apostles went forth to teach and preach.
We now must see how the Holy Spirit led Luke write in detail concerning the work of Christ in the gathering of the church. In a relatively short time (A.D. 29 – A.D. 60), the gospel spread from Jerusalem to Rome and encompassed both Jews and Gentiles. The key verse to the book can be found in chapter 18, “But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you; and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem and all Judea and in Samaria and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
Upon reading this letter, it soon becomes apparent that it is different from the other letters that Paul wrote in that it is impossible to draw out of the letter one general theme which the apostle is making for the church of Philippi. In this, one of his most personal letters, he touches on many subjects which are of importance for the Philippians as well as the church today.
The keynote of fellowship in love is emphasized much in our day. Oftentimes, leaders in the church emphasize love at the expense of the truth or its opposite, emphasize the truth at the expense of love. The Holy Spirit has given us this small letter to teach us that true fellowship is in the truth and must be sanctioned by love. Let’s see how this is true from the letter itself. A BRIEF OUTLINE 1. Introduction (I John 1:1-4). The usual identification of author and intended recipients is lacking. Instead, he begins by introducing Christ Who is the Word of...