Main point summary
Teach sound doctrine, which accords with godliness.
Paul, a servant 1 of God and a an apostle of Jesus Christ,
Παῦλος δοῦλος θεοῦ, ἀπόστολος δὲ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ
for the sake of the faith of God’s elect
κατὰ πίστιν ἐκλεκτῶν θεοῦ
and b their knowledge of the truth, c which accords with godliness,
καὶ ἐπίγνωσιν ἀληθείας τῆς κατʼ εὐσέβειαν
d in hope of eternal life,
ἐπʼ ἐλπίδι ζωῆς αἰωνίου,
which God, e who never lies, f promised g before the ages began 1
ἣν ἐπηγγείλατο ὁ ἀψευδὴς θεὸς πρὸ χρόνων αἰωνίων,
and h at the proper time manifested in his word
ἐφανέρωσεν δὲ καιροῖς ἰδίοις τὸν λόγον αὐτοῦ
i through the preaching j with which I have been entrusted k by the command of God our Savior;
ἐν κηρύγματι, ὃ ἐπιστεύθην ἐγὼ κατʼ ἐπιταγὴν τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν θεοῦ,
To Titus, l my true child in m a common faith:
Τίτῳ γνησίῳ τέκνῳ κατὰ κοινὴν πίστιν,
n Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.
χάρις καὶ εἰρήνη ἀπὸ θεοῦ πατρὸς καὶ Χριστοῦ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν.
o This is why I left you in Crete,
Τούτου χάριν ἀπέλιπόν σε ἐν Κρήτῃ,
so that you might put what remained into order,
ἵνα τὰ λείποντα ἐπιδιορθώσῃ
and p appoint elders in every town
καὶ καταστήσῃς κατὰ πόλιν πρεσβυτέρους,
as I directed you—
ὡς ἐγώ σοι διεταξάμην,
q if anyone is above reproach,
εἴ τίς ἐστιν ἀνέγκλητος,
the husband of one wife, 1
μιᾶς γυναικὸς ἀνήρ,
and his children are believers 2 and not open to the charge of r debauchery or insubordination.
τέκνα ἔχων πιστά, μὴ ἐν κατηγορίᾳ ἀσωτίας ἢ ἀνυπότακτα.
For an overseer, 1 s as God’s steward, must be above reproach.
δεῖ γὰρ τὸν ἐπίσκοπον ἀνέγκλητον εἶναι ὡς θεοῦ οἰκονόμον,
He must not t be arrogant
or a drunkard
u or greedy for gain,
a lover of good,
v and disciplined.
He must w hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught,
ἀντεχόμενον τοῦ κατὰ τὴν διδαχὴν πιστοῦ λόγου,
so that he may be able to give instruction in x sound 1 doctrine
ἵνα δυνατὸς ᾖ καὶ παρακαλεῖν ἐν τῇ διδασκαλίᾳ τῇ ὑγιαινούσῃ
and also to rebuke those who contradict it.
καὶ τοὺς ἀντιλέγοντας ἐλέγχειν.
For there are many who are insubordinate, y empty talkers and deceivers, especially those of z the circumcision party. 1
Εἰσὶν γὰρ πολλοὶ [καὶ] ἀνυπότακτοι, ματαιολόγοι καὶ φρεναπάται, μάλιστα οἱ ἐκ τῆς περιτομῆς,
They must be silenced,
οὓς δεῖ ἐπιστομίζειν,
since a they are upsetting whole families
οἵτινες ὅλους οἴκους ἀνατρέπουσιν
by teaching b for shameful gain what they ought not to teach.
διδάσκοντες ἃ μὴ δεῖ αἰσχροῦ κέρδους χάριν.
c One of the Cretans, 1 a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” 2
εἶπέν τις ἐξ αὐτῶν ἴδιος αὐτῶν προφήτης• Κρῆτες ἀεὶ ψεῦσται, κακὰ θηρία, γαστέρες ἀργαί.
This testimony is true.
ἡ μαρτυρία αὕτη ἐστὶν ἀληθής.
Therefore d rebuke them e sharply,
διʼ ἣν αἰτίαν ἔλεγχε αὐτοὺς ἀποτόμως,
that they f may be sound in the faith,
ἵνα ὑγιαίνωσιν ἐν τῇ πίστει,
g not devoting themselves to Jewish myths and h the commands of people i who turn away from the truth.
μὴ προσέχοντες Ἰουδαϊκοῖς μύθοις καὶ ἐντολαῖς ἀνθρώπων ἀποστρεφομένων τὴν ἀλήθειαν.
j To the pure, all things are pure,
πάντα καθαρὰ τοῖς καθαροῖς•
but to the defiled and k unbelieving, nothing is pure;
τοῖς δὲ μεμιαμμένοις καὶ ἀπίστοις οὐδὲν καθαρόν,
but both l their minds and their consciences are defiled.
ἀλλὰ μεμίανται αὐτῶν καὶ ὁ νοῦς καὶ ἡ συνείδησις.
m They profess to know God,
θεὸν ὁμολογοῦσιν εἰδέναι,
but they n deny him by their works.
τοῖς δὲ ἔργοις ἀρνοῦνται,
They are detestable, disobedient, o unfit for any good work.
βδελυκτοὶ ὄντες καὶ ἀπειθεῖς καὶ πρὸς πᾶν ἔργον ἀγαθὸν ἀδόκιμοι.
But as for you, teach what accords with p sound 1 doctrine.
Σὺ δὲ λάλει ἃ πρέπει τῇ ὑγιαινούσῃ διδασκαλίᾳ.
Older men are to be sober-minded,
Πρεσβύτας νηφαλίους εἶναι,
p sound in faith,
ὑγιαίνοντας τῇ πίστει,
and in steadfastness.
q Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior,
πρεσβύτιδας ὡσαύτως ἐν καταστήματι ἱεροπρεπεῖς,
r not slanderers
s or slaves to much wine.
μὴ οἴνῳ πολλῷ δεδουλωμένας,
They are to teach what is good,
and so train the young women
ἵνα σωφρονίζωσιν τὰς νέας
to love their husbands
to be self-controlled,
u working at home,
and v submissive to their own husbands,
ὑποτασσομένας τοῖς ἰδίοις ἀνδράσιν,
w that the word of God may not be reviled.
ἵνα μὴ ὁ λόγος τοῦ θεοῦ βλασφημῆται.
Likewise, urge x the younger men to be self-controlled.
Τοὺς νεωτέρους ὡσαύτως παρακάλει σωφρονεῖν
Show yourself in all respects to be y a model of good works,
περὶ πάντα, σεαυτὸν παρεχόμενος τύπον καλῶν ἔργων,
and in your teaching z show integrity, a dignity, and b sound speech that cannot be condemned,
ἐν τῇ διδασκαλίᾳ ἀφθορίαν, σεμνότητα, λόγον ὑγιῆ ἀκατάγνωστον,
c so that an opponent may be put to shame,
ἵνα ὁ ἐξ ἐναντίας ἐντραπῇ
having nothing evil to say about us.
μηδὲν ἔχων λέγειν περὶ ἡμῶν φαῦλον.
d Bondservants 1 are to be submissive to their own masters e in everything;
Δούλους ἰδίοις δεσπόταις ὑποτάσσεσθαι ἐν πᾶσιν,
they are to be well-pleasing,
f but showing all good faith,
ἀλλὰ πᾶσαν πίστιν ἐνδεικνυμένους ἀγαθήν,
g so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior.
ἵνα τὴν διδασκαλίαν τὴν τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν θεοῦ κοσμῶσιν ἐν πᾶσιν.
For h the grace of God i has appeared,
Ἐπεφάνη γὰρ ἡ χάρις τοῦ θεοῦ
bringing salvation j for all people,
σωτήριος πᾶσιν ἀνθρώποις
to renounce ungodliness and k worldly passions,
ἵνα ἀρνησάμενοι τὴν ἀσέβειαν καὶ τὰς κοσμικὰς ἐπιθυμίας
and l to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in m the present age,
σωφρόνως καὶ δικαίως καὶ εὐσεβῶς ζήσωμεν ἐν τῷ νῦν αἰῶνι,
n waiting for our blessed o hope, the p appearing of the glory of our great q God and Savior Jesus Christ,
προσδεχόμενοι τὴν μακαρίαν ἐλπίδα καὶ ἐπιφάνειαν τῆς δόξης τοῦ μεγάλου θεοῦ καὶ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ,
r who gave himself for us
ὃς ἔδωκεν ἑαυτὸν ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν,
to s redeem us from all lawlessness
ἵνα λυτρώσηται ἡμᾶς ἀπὸ πάσης ἀνομίας
and t to purify for himself t a people for his own possession who are u zealous for good works.
καὶ καθαρίσῃ ἑαυτῷ λαὸν περιούσιον, ζηλωτὴν καλῶν ἔργων.
Declare these things;
and v rebuke with all authority.
καὶ ἔλεγχε μετὰ πάσης ἐπιταγῆς•
w Let no one disregard you.
μηδείς σου περιφρονείτω.
x to be submissive to rulers and authorities,
ἀρχαῖς ἐξουσίαις ὑποτάσσεσθαι,
y to be obedient,
to be ready for every good work,
πρὸς πᾶν ἔργον ἀγαθὸν ἑτοίμους εἶναι,
z to speak evil of no one,
a to avoid quarreling,
to be gentle,
and b to show perfect courtesy toward all people.
πᾶσαν ἐνδεικνυμένους πραΰτητα πρὸς πάντας ἀνθρώπους.
For c we ourselves were once foolish,
῏Ημεν γάρ ποτε καὶ ἡμεῖς ἀνόητοι,
slaves to various passions and pleasures,
δουλεύοντες ἐπιθυμίαις καὶ ἡδοναῖς ποικίλαις,
passing our days in malice and envy,
ἐν κακίᾳ καὶ φθόνῳ διάγοντες,
hated by others
and hating one another.
But when d the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared,
ὅτε δὲ ἡ χρηστότης καὶ ἡ φιλανθρωπία ἐπεφάνη τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν θεοῦ,
he saved us,
e not because of works done by us in righteousness,
οὐκ ἐξ ἔργων τῶν ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ ἃ ἐποιήσαμεν ἡμεῖς
but f according to his own mercy,
ἀλλὰ κατὰ τὸ αὐτοῦ ἔλεος
by g the washing of regeneration and h renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he i poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior,
διὰ λουτροῦ παλιγγενεσίας καὶ ἀνακαινώσεως πνεύματος ἁγίου, οὗ ἐξέχεεν ἐφʼ ἡμᾶς πλουσίως διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν,
so that j being justified by his grace we might become k heirs l according to the hope of eternal life.
ἵνα δικαιωθέντες τῇ ἐκείνου χάριτι κληρονόμοι γενηθῶμεν κατʼ ἐλπίδα ζωῆς αἰωνίου.
The saying is m trustworthy,
Πιστὸς ὁ λόγος•
and I want you to insist on these things,
καὶ περὶ τούτων βούλομαί σε διαβεβαιοῦσθαι,
so that those who have believed in God may be careful n to devote themselves to good works.
ἵνα φροντίζωσιν καλῶν ἔργων προΐστασθαι οἱ πεπιστευκότες θεῷ•
These things are excellent and profitable for people.
ταῦτά ἐστιν καλὰ καὶ ὠφέλιμα τοῖς ἀνθρώποις.
But o avoid foolish p controversies, q genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law,
μωρὰς δὲ ζητήσεις καὶ γενεαλογίας καὶ ἔρεις καὶ μάχας νομικὰς περιΐστασο•
for r they are unprofitable and worthless.
εἰσὶν γὰρ ἀνωφελεῖς καὶ μάταιοι.
As for a person who stirs up division,
s after warning him once
and then twice,
καὶ δευτέραν νουθεσίαν
t have nothing more to do with him,
knowing that such a person is warped and sinful;
εἰδὼς ὅτι ἐξέστραπται ὁ τοιοῦτος καὶ ἁμαρτάνει
he is self-condemned.
When I send Artemas or u Tychicus to you,
Ὅταν πέμψω Ἀρτεμᾶν πρὸς σὲ ἢ Τύχικον,
do your best to come to me v at Nicopolis,
σπούδασον ἐλθεῖν πρός με εἰς Νικόπολιν,
for I have decided to spend the winter there.
ἐκεῖ γὰρ κέκρικα παραχειμάσαι.
Do your best to speed Zenas the lawyer and w Apollos on their way;
Ζηνᾶν τὸν νομικὸν καὶ Ἀπολλῶν σπουδαίως πρόπεμψον,
see that they lack nothing.
ἵνα μηδὲν αὐτοῖς λείπῃ.
And let our people learn x to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need,
μανθανέτωσαν δὲ καὶ οἱ ἡμέτεροι καλῶν ἔργων προΐστασθαι εἰς τὰς ἀναγκαίας χρείας,
and not y be unfruitful.
ἵνα μὴ ὦσιν ἄκαρποι.
All who are with me send greetings to you.
Ἀσπάζονταί σε οἱ μετʼ ἐμοῦ πάντες.
Greet those who love us in the faith.
ἄσπασαι τοὺς φιλοῦντας ἡμᾶς ἐν πίστει.
z Grace be with you all.
Ἡ χάρις μετὰ πάντων ὑμῶν.
Arcing Notes 1:1–3 : Why do I arc 1b–3 as a purpose, seeing as there is no hina clause? Kata can indicate purpose also (See “κατά,” BDAG, 512.) Paul writes (or is an apostle) for the purpose of the faith of the elect and their knowledge of the truth. 1:1–3 : Why a progression between verse 1 and verses 2-3 ? Faith and knowledge of the truth (which accords with godliness) lead to eternal life. 1:5b–c : Why do I arc this as Id-Exp? I understand appointing elders in every town to be specifically what Paul has in mind by putting what remained in order. Thus, I see one purpose here, not two. 1:6 : With the conjunction "if," why do I not arc this as If-Then? Because the "then" proposition (then appoint him) is implied, not stated. I'm arcing it as if Paul says, "Appoint men who are above reproach" in 6a. 1:7 : With the conjunction "for," why do I not arc verse 7 as a ground or Id-Exp? I could arc it this way. But it seems Paul is not giving a reason here. Nor does he seem to be giving an explanation. Rather, he's repeating and emphasizing the need for a prospective elder to be above reproach. The two explanations unpacking being above reproach seem to unpack two different aspects of being above reproach: 1) in family relationships and 2) in general character. 1:10 : The "for" (gar) makes it clear that this whole passage is a grounds for Paul's call to appoint qualified men as elders in every church (verses 5–9). The idea is that elders must hold to sound doctrine and live godly lives and be able to rebuke false teachers (in stark contrast with the false teachers in verses 10–16) because false teachers are prevalent, infiltrating churches and poisoning them with false doctrine that leads to ungodliness. 1:10 : This verse lays out the situation: False teachers are infiltrating the church. The rest of the passage outlines the response Paul calls for (while giving more details about the false teachers): silence and rebuke them sharply. 1:11 & 1:13 : Paul prescribes the response in these two verses: silence and rebuke them sharply. 1:11–12 : Paul gives the grounds for those two responses. 1) Their influence - They are upsetting whole households. 2) Their message - They are teaching what they ought not to teach. 3) Their motive - They are teaching for shameful gain. 4) Their character - They are liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons. 1:13 : Paul gives the purpose or goal of the response he calls for - that they may be sound in the faith 1:14 : Paul unpacks the flip side of the purpose - that they may no longer devote themselves to Jewish myths and the commands of people who turn away from the truth. 1:15–16 : Paul explains the nature of the rebuke or what is theologically wrong with the false teachers/teaching. It seems they have a faulty understanding of what it means to be pure before God, much like the Pharisees did in Mark 7:1–23. So verses 15–16 explain both what is theologically wrong with both the false teachers and their teachings. In effect, verses 15–16 provide both the content and nature of the rebuke. There is also a sense in which verses 15–16 are a grounds for verses 11–14 in that they provide more reasons for the elders to silence and sharply rebuke the false teachers, but I think Id-Exp best encapsulates the arcing relationship. I have it explaining all of verses 10–14 (as opposed to only explaining verses 11–14) because it explains what is both empty and deceptive (verse 10) in their teaching: The man-made commands don't produce purity. These man-made purity commands were somehow rooted in Judaism ("circumcision" in verse 10, "Jewish myths" in verse 14) (I understand the circumcision party [Greek: "the circumcision"] to be a reference to Jews and Jewish converts to Christianity (Acts 10:45; 11:2; Rom 15:8; Col 4:11) and that this false teaching in Titus is of a different flavor from the arguments from "the circumcision" in Acts 15 that Christians need to be circumcised.) 2:1 : I arc 2:1–15 as a whole section in series with 1:5–15. With the conjunction "but" why do I not arc it as a -/+ or A? Certainly Paul is contrasting the false teachers and their teaching with Titus and what Paul calls him to teach. But chapter 2 does not fit under the arc of appointing qualified elders in chapter 1. Instead, Paul is moving on to the next major part of the body of his letter. 2:2–10 : These verses are the content of the teaching that accords with sound doctrine (verse 1), thus Id-Exp. 2:4 : This verse begins with a hina clause, indicating purpose (BDAG). In other words, older women are to teach in order to train. 2:5 : This verse ends with another hina clause, again indicating purpose. I understand that it is all of the younger women's actions/character qualities that prevent the word of God from being reviled, not merely their submission to their own husbands. 2:6–8 : I'm including Titus among the younger men, thus a series between verses 6 & 7–8. If I'm right, then Paul is addressing 5 groups of people in this passage: older men (2:2), older women (2:3–4a), younger women (2:4–5), younger men (2:6–8), and bondservants (2:9–10). 2:8 : I'm interpreting the participle "having" to be a causal participle ~ because [they] have nothing evil to say about us. How do 2:1, 2:2–10, 2:11–14, and 2:15 relate? 2:2–10 unpack what Paul means by "what acccords with sound doctrine" in 2:1 (thus id-exp). While 2:11–14 give reasons (grounds) for Christians to obey the instructions in 2:2–10, it is itself sound doctrine, not what accords with sound doctrine. This is why I have it grounding 2:1–10 and not 2:2–10 . Paul repeats the charge to teach in 2:15, forming the parallel inference in a bilateral. 2:12b–c : The participle “renounce” is most likely a participle of attendant circumstance (as ESV translates it), thus "renounce" and "live" are distinct statements. If it is adverbial, it is most likely a participle of means and would be arced as an ac-mn (renouncing ungodliness and worldly passions would be a means of living a self-controlled, upright, and godly life). With "renounce" being a participle and "live" being the main verb, I see this as a progression rather than a series. Renouncing ungodliness also precedes and progresses towards godliness, theologically speaking. I also considered arcing this as -/+, but it lacks the not...but conjunctions. Though the concepts of ungodliness and worldly passions are negative, and self-controlled, upright, and godly lives are positive, the propositions Paul makes are both positive (renounce and live) and form a progression (or series, though I think less likely). He is not stating one idea in two opposite ways as would be the case in a -/+ relationship 2:13 : I understand the participle to be a temporal participle (i.e. "while waiting for our blessed hope..."). NET & NIV translate it as a temporal participle. 2:14 : This is an explanation of "Jesus Christ" in verse 13. Normally I wouldn't make a relative clause like verse 14 a separate proposition (or propositions in this case), but I find it helpful here. The bilateral in Titus 3 : 3:3–7 is obviously a grounds. It clearly grounds 3:1–2. Why do I say it also grounds 3:8? I see a similar pattern to Titus 2: call to teach, content of teaching, grounds for teaching, repeat call to teach. With a repeat call to teach, the grounds for teaching applies to both. 3:8a–c : Our understanding of "the saying" and "these things" affects how we arc this verse. I understand "the saying" to refer to Titus 3:4–7 and "these things" to refer to Titus 3:1–2 (or possibly 3:1–7). (For a breakdown of various commentators understanding of the referent of "the saying" see George W. Knight III, The Pastoral Epistles: A Commentary on the Greek Text, NIGTC (Grand Rapids; Carlisle (England): Eerdmans; The Paternoster Press, 1992), 347–48.) 8b–8d all relate to "these things" (with "good works" being synonymous with "these things" here in my understanding). Thus, I see a progression from 3:8a to 3:8b–d. It's possible 3:8a could be a grounds for 3:8b (as 3:4–7 is a grounds for 3:1–2), but I'm not convinced the reason Paul wants Titus to insist on "these things" is because the saying is trustworthy. Grammatically he uses "and" not "therefore" to connect the propositions, and it seems Paul is validating what he has just said before progressing to an imperative. 3:8d : This verse grounds the charge to insist on these things in a parallel manner to 3:9b grounding 3:9a. Note the +/- parallel between "excellent and profitable" and "unprofitable and worthless." The +/- relationship between 3:1–8 and 3:9–11 : The idea is this: Live a godly life (as unpacked in 3:1–2, 8), not an ungodly one ( 3:9 ). Note the connection between these verses: avoid quarreling ( 3:2 ) vs. controversies and quarrels about the law ( 3:9 ), gentle and showing perfect courtesy ( 3:2 ) vs dissensions ( 3:9 ), being ready and devoted to good works ( 3:1 , 8 ) because they are excellent and profitable ( 3:8 ) vs. controversies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law that are unprofitable and worthless ( 3:9 ). 3:10a : This is technically not a separate proposition, but the idea Paul presents here (when you encounter a person who stirs up division) is a separate proposition. Without breaking this into its own proposition, there would be no way to arc a sit-R, which Paul clearly presents in verse 10. 3:10b–c : I'm arcing this as a progression rather than temporal. Certainly there is a sense of timing (after), but the idea Paul presents is one of order, not the timing of the second proposition. Paul really implies a progressive response to the situation: warn him once, then warn him again, then have nothing to do with him. 3:11 : I'm interpreting the participle "knowing" as a causal participle (because you know). The progression from 3:9 to 3:10–11 : Paul progresses from Titus calling people to avoid ungodliness to the situation of what to do with those who live ungodly lives within the gathering of the church. The relationship between these two sections is based on the parallel ungodliness (foolish controversies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law ~ division) in each section. Paul instructs the church to not be ungodly in verse 9. In verses 10–11, he instructs the church regarding what to do with those who are ungodly in those ways 3:13b : Why do I arc this proposition as a purpose clause? Though the ESV doesn't bring it out, the proposition begins with a hina clause, which usually indicates purpose. The proposition could more literally be translated "so that nothing might be lacking to them." The ESV is likely carrying over the imperative force of the command "speed on their way" in their translation. 3:14b : Why do I arc this proposition as a purpose clause? Just like 13b, the proposition begins with a hina clause, indicating purpose. It is possible that εἰς at the end of 14a begins a purpose clause. BDAG lists this as one of many possible definitions for the word (See " ε ἰ ς , " BDAG, 4f, 290.) The NIV translates the phrase "in order to provide for urgent needs." Commentator George Knight suggests this is the most likely meaning as well (George W. Knight III, The Pastoral Epistles: A Commentary on the Greek Text , NIGTC (Grand Rapids; Carlisle (England): Eerdmans; The Paternoster Press, 1992, 359). But it does not seem to me that helping out in cases of urgent need is the purpose of devoting themselves to good works. Helping out cases of urgent need seems like an example (albeit a critical one) of the good works they're called to do. Rather, the purpose of devoting themselves to good works is to be fruitful (i.e. not be unfruitful). Bill Mounce brings this out in his translation: "And let our [people] learn to be devoted to good deeds, specifically the urgent needs, lest they be fruitless" (William D. Mounce, Pastoral Epistles , WBC 46 (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2000), 458.