Adorned - Week 2: Doctrine, You, and Titus 2

With Mary Kassian

We all have set of beliefs about God, ourselves, and the world. But is our doctrine sound? Healthy? Consider your doctrine against the backdrop of Titus 2:1.

About the Speaker

Mary Kassian

Mary Kassian

Mary Kassian is an award-winning author, an internationally renowned speaker, and a frequent guest on Revive Our Hearts. She has written more than a dozen books and Bible studies …

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Watch the drama that accompanies this session: Wise Woman Bake Off

Mary Kassian: The amount of rain that Hurricane Harvey dumped on Houston was unprecedented. It was so scary watching the news. We kept texting friends and family to make sure that they were doing all right and that their homes were all right.

My daughter-in-law is from Houston, and she was in constant contact with her mom whose neighborhood had to be evacuated because the waters were threatening.

My sister-in-law lives in Houston and has a bayou in the backyard and was watching nervously as the flood waters reached the very top, the brink of the bayou and were worried that they would have to leave their home.

In the end, both their homes escaped damage, but other people in Houston weren’t so fortunate. Rushing flood waters claimed the lives of dozens and destroyed tens of thousands of homes. And the dangers didn’t end when the storms passed.

Experts repeatedly warned people about the dangers of the murky-colored flood water that the storm had left behind. Residents were told that besides the dirt and the debris floating around, the water was contaminated with human waste, that it contained E-coli and viruses and toxic chemicals and pollutants and all sorts of nasty microbes.

It wasn’t long before hospitals in Houston were inundated with patients with staph infections and skin infections and respiratory infections and stomach illnesses. One man almost lost his life when a cut in his leg got infected with flesh-eating bacteria. The danger of the contaminated flood waters posed such a risk that the officials declared a public state of emergency in Texas.

In the book of Titus, Paul tells his friend Titus how to address a spiritual health emergency that existed amongst the believers on the Island of Crete.

The Island of Crete was a bustling trade center. It was in the kind of the junction of four different seas, so it was a really busy port. It had a spectacular stadium. It had beautiful baths. It had grand temples and a fabulous shopping mall.

Cretans were daring sailors. They were prosperous traders. They were fierce warriors. But they were also known for their character flaws, which were many.

Historians specifically mention their greed and their gluttony and their self-indulgence and their insubordination, and most of all, their propensity to fabricate stories, or to bend the truth. Things were so bad that to Cretanize became proverbial for telling a lie.

Paul was concerned that there was some Cretanizing going on in the church. He describes the problem in Titus chapter 1, verses 10—16.

So, in a nutshell, a Hurricane Harvey theological storm had hit the congregation on the Island of Crete. False teachers were flooding the church with all kinds of ideas that were politically correct but theologically wrong. And these teachers were undoubtedly great speakers. They were probably really engaging. They were popular. They were provocative. They had so many social media followers. They had fantastic blogs.

But they were kicking up the storm of controversy amongst the Christian community, a storm that was so severe it was upsetting whole households. Paul warned the church that their ideas were like dangerous contaminates.

Now, we don’t exactly know what these ideas were, but verse 14 indicates that they were concepts that were drawn from popular myths and also ideas that came from highly influential people from outside of the Christian community.

So these were progressive and politically correct ideas. The false teachers had likely introduced them into the church to make Christianity more palatable, so that it would match up better with Cretan culture and it would make for a better sell.

Their arguments probably sounded something like this: “Hmmm, those old boys, those pastors, Paul, Titus, they’re so narrow-minded and judgmental and unloving. Our culture’s ideas …

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Woman to woman.
Older and younger.
Side by side.
Life on life.
This is God's good and beautiful plan.