Be Sober! Part – 3
Updated: May 12
Of the things Titus is exhorted to encourage in the older women is that they teach the younger women how to be most successful and fulfilled in the roles as wives and mothers, and managers of their homes.
Central to the strength of the Church is the family as a whole unit, Father as head, Wife as his helpmate (helpmeet) and Manager of their home, Mother as nurturer and teacher of the Children. The teaching (and nurturing) component is indeed a shared responsibility of both parents, but mothers have a special calling to teach their daughters Godly womanhood, and fathers have a special calling to teach their sons Godly manhood. Both share the responsibility of living the life of Christ before their children and modeling the relationship of Christ and the Church in how they relate as husband and wife to one another.
All of this happens best in an atmosphere of sober-minded, clear thinking and sensitivity to the voice of the Holy Spirit, leading and equipping each one to carry out their calling by faith, motivated by obedience and love.
"The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; 4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.'" Titus 2: 3-5
In Part 2. yesterday, we looked at how young women should be taught to love their husbands and their children, and what it means to be discreet. Today, we continue the passage.
What does it mean to be chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed?
The final phrase in this passage is particularly arresting because it indicates that to disobey the instruction that precedes it is to blaspheme God himself. Let's look at the terms.
To be Chaste — (a general definition)
1. Not having experienced sexual intercourse; virginal.
2. Abstaining from sexual relations that are not sanctioned by certain religious laws or moral principles.
3. Abstaining from sexual relations; celibate.
There is little need for further statement to understand what this means for the believer. Abstinence is a virtue. Period! Notwithstanding, all the pressures to "hook up" from the social culture, the entertainment media, the so-called educational (indoctrination-in-deviance mills) institutions, even in the medical profession, among psychologists, and psychiatrists alike, to dissuade young people and unmarried couples from even the idea of abstaining from sexual intimacy.
The medical community, not all, but most suggest that abstinence is the cause of mental stress and can lead to emotionally induced psychological trauma. But God said, be chaste until marriage, and then constrain yourself to union with your own spouse exclusively. Whose report will we believe?
Very rarely is abstinence taught in any way in the mainstream system of education or communications media. In fact, it is mostly discouraged in favor of promiscuity as if by it everyone experiences a more fulfilling life. The truth is it can never fulfill and it never will.
Nonetheless, the Word of God stands sure and unchanging. Being chaste is a quality of the Godly woman until she is married.
Keepers at home — The Greek word translated "keepers at home" is oikourous. One who watches over a household and family, seeing to it that all members are cared for, and all things maintained in good order.** Oikourous embodies the broader meaning of a calling more significant than that of just housekeeper. The high calling of being a helpmate to her husband and the nurturer of her children has profound implications for her as the one who sets the foundation for the good of the whole society. Her role literally can make or break the success of a family to raise Godly children, who become Godly adults.
The strength of the home, the community, the state, and the nation rests by large measure in her hands, because she is the one uniquely able to bring children into the world and being their nurturer in the most formative years of their lives, imparting to them in infancy the Word of God. (The English word "nurture" is a beautiful word to describe a mother's role. It means to nourish both body and soul. It refers to the tasks of feeding and educating a child.)
To be Good —
1. Being positive or desirable in nature; not bad or poor.
2. Having the qualities that are desirable or distinguishing in a particular thing. Serving the desired purpose or end; suitable.
Having been raised in a much more innocent time in this nation, where boys and girls where brought up by their parents to be good people, possessing and demonstrating a character of honesty, modesty, decorum, self-respect, and respect for others and their property, politeness, courtesy, good manners, respect for elders, propriety, decency, showing genuine appreciation, I am often baffled by the immaturity, arrogance, self-centeredness and prideful posturing of so many today in the younger generations.
But the fault in part rests with us. Far too many in our generation failed to pass along what we learned from our parents. We learned at a young age that God is Good and He, through Jesus Christ our Lord, is the measure, the standard, and the pattern for how we are to live as children and as adults. They established a good reputation in the community, and left it for us to maintain and pass along to the next generations. To be good is to be like Christ.
To be Obedient to their own husbands that the word of God be not blasphemed—
The idea of a woman being obedient to her husband has been so distorted from its Biblical meaning that even the mention of it is met with vigorous contempt, vitriol, and even the threat of violence by many non-Christian women and men, and a significant number of Christian women and men as well.
The truth of the exhortation to be obedient to their own husbands is missed when seen as oppression and denial of a woman's autonomy and right to determine her own choices and actions. The stress point of this passage is centered on the misunderstanding and false notion of the roles of both the husband and the wife in a Godly Christian marriage, particularly in matters of home management and the raising of children. But the apostle likened not having this proper order in the home is blasphemous to God.
That is a pretty strong assertion!
"Obedient to their own husbands that the word of God be not blasphemed."
1. the act of insulting or showing contempt or lack of reverence for God
2. the act of claiming the attributes of a deity
3. irreverence toward something considered sacred or inviolable
It is blasphemous to place ourselves in the seat of God and tell Him he is wrong and our way is right. The simplicity and beauty of obedience is simply to take God at His Word without wrath and doubting or exalting ourselves above His Word and His laws. The greatest freedom, security, fulfillment, and joy we can know is to be obedient to God's Word.
The first commandment is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul mind and strength. Do we love Him with ALL our heart, All our soul, All our mind, and All our strength? Jesus said to the disciples. "If you love me, keep my commandments." He also said, "Husbands love you wives as Christ Loves the Church? Men are you doing that? And wives, be obedient to your husbands. Wives are you doing that?
"Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." Mathew 7:21-23
46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? 47 Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: 48 He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock." Luke 6:46-48
It would not be practical for me to undertake an in-depth study of the topic of keepers at home here. I refer you to this article for consideration on the subject.
"Keepers at Home"
By William O. Einwechter
May 01, 1999
Suffice it to say for this meditation today that God has a perfect order for all our lives to live in harmony with His intended purpose and establishment of all things in creation. Being sober and clear minded, discerning, and knowing the Truth that is only found in Jesus Christ is fundamental to knowing what the will of God is, and in humility and gratitude, submitting ourselves to Him, to His will and to His Kingdom coming on earth as it is in Heaven.
Just a note of clarification: I do not believe that the only role for all women or men is the same. The subject here is the particular role of wife and mother in the context of Godly order toward the greatest realization of God's intended purpose for His Church. Now in these last days God has poured out His Spirit on all flesh. Men and women alike. I believe He has raised up both to serve Him in traditional and non-traditional roles for the good of all without forfeiting the fundamental callings of either in creating strong families, strong faith (In God)-filled communities and bodies of believers to carry the message of the Gospel into the world.
Finally, each of us must follow the leading of the Lord for our lives. Whatever profession, work, ministry, skill, ability, talent, sacrifice, submission, or vocation He has given us to pursue.
"23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; 24 Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ." Colossians 3:23
Therefore, be sober, be vigilant, because there is one lurking in the shadows to devour us, but he cannot succeed if we remain alert!
Tomorrow — Part 4