The book of Titus is a letter written by the Apostle Paul, approximately 62 to 67 A.D., to Titus, a mature brother in Christ. Paul and Titus were missionary traveling companions at one time. Paul had left Titus on the island of Crete to oversee the recent converts there and establish them in the truth. In this letter (epistle), Paul instructed Titus as a son explaining how to establish local churches and choose leaders. “For this reason I left you in Crete, that you might set in order what remains, and appoint elders in every city as I directed you.” (Titus 1:5 NAS). In the next few verses, he lists necessary qualifications for an elder, such as having self-control, holiness, faithfulness in marriage and knowing sound doctrine.
There was a spirit of rebellion among the believers, which, if not stopped, could hinder their growth as Christians. “They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient, and worthless for any good deed.” (Titus 1:16 NAS). Paul tells Titus that he must sternly advise believers not to pay attention “…to Jewish legends and…men who turn their backs on the truth.” (Titus 1:14 Weymouth). He also advises Titus, in Chapter 1, to reprimand the groups for dishonesty and false teachings.
Paul encouraged Titus to be firm in urging Christians to follow authentic teachings. “But as for you, speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine.” (Titus 2:1 NAS). “…exhort and reprove with all authority. Let no one disregard you.” (Titus 2:15 NAS).
Chapters 2 and 3 contain specific admonitions for local believers. Titus was to teach them that, although justified (reckoned righteous), by God’s grace, through faith in the sacrificial death of His son, Jesus, they were not to live lawlessly!
Paul summarizes the general message in Titus 2:11, 12 (NAS). “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age.”