In studying the book of Titus, John Benton deals with the problem of how the modern world affects, almost unconsciously, the way we think. Many of the issues that Titus faced on Crete are faced by the church today: false teachers, the roles of men and women, authority and, which the author suggests is the main theme of this letter, the gap that so often exists between what Christians profess to believe and the way they actually live.
Many Christians are unaware of this gap. This does not always arise from conscious disobedience to the Lord. Often sincere Christians find that this gap is opening up in their lives and they are rather bewildered by it. Something is happening which they do not quite understand, and they are not sure what to do about it.
Because of this dichotomy between belief and behaviour the epistle has much to say to our generation of Christians today. As Paul writes to Titus, he is well aware of the problem. But he has a sure and firm answer. The apostle provides us with spiritual dynamite to blast a way out of the prison of subjectivism and self-centred living into the freedom and integrity which are ours in Christ.
Titus is not just a book for trainee pastors, elders and Christian leaders. It is a book which has an urgent message for us all.
John Benton is the pastor of Chertsey Street Baptist Church, Guildford, England, and has authored several books published by Evangelical Press.