Roles of the Older

With false teachers working overtime, Paul had qualified men strategically placed within the churches to help promote sound doctrine. With properly qualified leaders, the church will thrive, and its members will grow in their faith. While this was very important, the other men and women had their own duties that they must perform, to assist the younger members in their midst. The younger are to submit to the older and be willing to listen. (1Pet 1:5) This list to the older men and women is given in Titus chapter two and expanded on in chapter three encouraging the believers to live a godly lifestyle by being subject to rulers, obedient in general, and to live at peace with all men. Paul reminds them that they were just like these false teachers at one time, until Jesus Christ saved them by his mercy, basically they need to live a godly life and avoid the false teachers’ controversies.

Older Men:
Most importantly these older men needed sound doctrine, because this was a command. Interestingly, these men are to have some of the same qualifications as an overseer or deacon. It is intending that all Christians need to have a high standard of godly living. The older is to beg the younger to think properly and urge him to do right. By example the older needs to show the younger how to live the Christian life. These are commands from Scripture that all older men should be doing.

Older Women
They are to have a holy behavior and way of life. Again, they should not live like the Devil by falsely accusing other people; they need to be free from wine, and to teach what is good. Their role is to encourage and teach the younger women to love their husbands and their children. Also they need to be taught to think properly. The younger needs to be taught how to be sensible good homemakers. For God’s glory, she should be able to place herself under the authority of her husband.

These commands should speak to most every one out there. There is usually always someone younger around you. I have taught similar lessons to teens and children: there is usually someone younger than you that you can teach and be an example for. Be on alert to the younger that is hanging around you and watching your every move. Be sure that you are walking close to Jesus, so when others follow, they will be led in the right direction.

Hebrews 13:7 Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith.

Children

 

Mark 10:13-15 And they were bringing children to Him so that He might touch them; but the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw this, He was indignant and said to them, “Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. “Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.”

Mark 10:23-27 And Jesus, looking around, said to His disciples, “How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!” The disciples were amazed at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” They were even more astonished and said to Him, “Then who can be saved?” Looking at them, Jesus said, “With people it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God.”

The culture, including the disciples, seen children as less important. Jesus gets angry with the disciples because they were trying to push away the children. Jesus contrasts the culture around him and reaches down and hugs, touches, and blesses children for who they are and not for what they can give. To enter into the kingdom of God one must become like a child (have a dependence upon God like a small child depends on his mother for everything). It is impossible to ever make it into heaven on ones own merit. It is God that does the saving.

Immediately following the children episode, as Jesus gets up to go on a journey a rich man runs up requesting spiritual knowledge on how to obtain eternal life. Jesus shows him how only God is good. The rich man came with the preconceived idea that he was a model citizen and this assured him eternal life. Yes, he had kept most of the Law (outwardly) since his youth. Jesus loved him and hugged him and said there is one thing that he is lacking, “Sell all of your possessions and follow me.” The rich man than realizes all of his shortcomings. His true God is his possessions. The rich man leaves without the eternal life that he so searched for. If he would have left his earthly treasures and he would have been given a hundred fold return on his investment (10:30). Jesus than speaks about riches, how it is impossible for a rich man to enter into heaven. The disciples are amazed and figured there was no chance that any of them could have eternal life. In verse 24, Jesus reminds them of the incident with the children. He calls them “children“. With your own works it is impossible to obtain eternal life.

Man is powerless, helpless, and with out ability, when it comes to saving himself. God alone has the ability and power to give the person eternal life. An individual must come to God like a child to receive the kingdom of God. He must realize that it is God who gives the free gift of eternal life. Those who try to obtain eternal life by man’s “good works” will never ever enter into the kingdom of God. It is Christ alone that saves.

An Unique Birth

The virgin birth is foundational to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ. This is what makes it possible for him to be 100% God and 100 % man. Genesis chapter three is the first prophecy of the virgin birth of the Messiah (“her seed”). Isaiah 7:14 (NASB) says, “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel (meaning, “God is with us”).” When Gabriel told Mary that she was pregnant with this promised child, she questioned him by asking, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” (Luke 1:34) Mary did not even understand how this would be possible. She knew that it takes a man and a woman to have a child. Gabriel answered and said, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:35)

With the virgin birth, Jesus was able to have a sinless human nature that was tempted in all ways like other men, yet he did not give in. He was also able to overcome Satan, empathize with man as his high priest, and to be our unblemished lamb that was able to die on the cross for our sins.