A costly jewel is meant to be polished, cleaned, and displayed. Proper care will result in a beautifully shining gem for others to see. Neglect of the jewel, however, will leave it tarnished and hidden from sight.
In today’s Scripture, Paul instructed slaves to be subject to their masters with respect, honesty, and trustworthiness so that “they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior (v. 10). The verb “adorn” here was commonly used for displaying jewels, and the implication is that we should treat our salvation like a jewel, using our lives as a means of displaying the beauty of God’s grace to the world.
That world-focus is apparent as Scripture reminds us that “the grace of God . . . offers salvation to all people” (v. 11). God’s concern is not just with a few individuals, but the whole world. So how are we to “adorn” God’s saving grace for the world to see? First, we must say “‘No’ to ungodliness and worldly passions.” Second, we must live “self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age” (v. 12). We glorify God and highlight His grace by resisting evil and doing good.
Our lives not only stand as a witness to the world but also prepare us for “the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ” (v. 13). We belong to Christ and wait for Him, because He is the one who “gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good” (v. 14).
In short, our lives of obedience are a response to His salvation and a way to adorn His grace for the world to see.