The island dwellers of Crete, otherwise known as Cretans, were notorious for lying, corruption, violence, and sexual sin. Located in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea, Crete’s harbors were strategically placed to service cities all over the region. For these reasons, Paul saw the island of Crete as fertile soil for the gospel of Jesus, launching the message of Christ to the corners of the known world. To accomplish this, he sent his travel companion and trusted mentee, Titus, to the island. Titus would show them a better way of living: how to restore order to a number of house churches that were being deceived by the local leaders and how the family could be the first frontier for evangelism.
In our text today, Paul instructs Titus on how the Cretan Christian family ought to live with one another. He touches on every demographic: older men (v. 2), older women (v. 3), younger women (vv. 4–5), younger men (vv. 6–8), and even workers and servants in the household (vv. 9–10). In a culture that paid homage to idols, dishonesty, and regarded Caesar as the deity, having a family live above reproach was key. Paul believed that the gospel’s supremacy must prove its redemptive power in the public square while all eyes were on the Christian family unit.
Like those on the island of Crete, many people today live on islands of sin and brokenness longing for a more hopeful future. If God can transform the lives of the Cretans to be a light for the Mediterranean world, the gospel message has the power to transform people today to be a light for our world. And, when evangelism starts with the family, it can have an impact that will last for generations.
>> Just like the Cretan Christian families, the world is watching you. How can your family be more evangelistic? Start with looking at the way you treat one another. Compare your family life to what is taught here by the apostle Paul.
Family is one of your most gracious gifts, but it can also be a source of immense pain. Reveal to us the ways our families fail to honor you and heal us so that we can help others discover the fullness of your design for family.