Life is short. And it gets shorter and goes faster every day you live. There is only just so much time to be productive and to serve the Lord. There is much along the way to distract. The world is filled with damaged people, including some who find their way, often temporarily, into the church family. Some of these folks have agendas and viewpoints that are a bit warped and not squarely in line with biblical teachings. It might be the outworking of some sadness in their lives that they do not understand or grasp fully. These people may be able to be redeemed through biblical warnings and sound doctrinal teaching. Others are simply perverse and are working under a sort of disguise, fulfilling some personal agenda and deficit in their lives. They are not deserving of multiple warnings and interventions beyond a first couple of efforts in setting the truth before them …
3:9 – But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless. 10 Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them. 11 You may be sure that such people are warped and sinful; they are self-condemned.
A part of living a productive life is to help enable those who have particularly committed their total time and energies to serving God and spreading the gospel message. Such workers have given up most of their ability to work in such a way to financially support themselves and are in need of the family of faith to help them in practical ways. Paul speaks to Titus about several of these folks (he and Titus being in this category largely as well), soliciting generous and practical support of those in service.
3:12 – As soon as I send Artemas or Tychicus to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, because I have decided to winter there. 13 Do everything you can to help Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way and see that they have everything they need. 14 Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order to provide for urgent needs and not live unproductive lives.
15 Everyone with me sends you greetings. Greet those who love us in the faith. Grace be with you all.
As we have seen in all of these chapters of the Pastoral Epistles, we all have a part to play. We have gifts to use, and we have resources to help others serve better with their gifts. It is all about the advance of the gospel message through living godly and productive lives. How are you living for God today, and in what way are you advancing the Kingdom?