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Titus 1:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness,
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Paul, a bond-servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of those chosen of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness,
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is according to godliness;
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— Paul, bondman of God, and apostle of Jesus Christ according to [the] faith of God's elect, and knowledge of [the] truth which [is] according to piety;
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Paul, a servant of God—an apostle moreover of Jesus Christ,—according to the faith of the chosen ones of God, and the personal knowledge of the truth that is according to godliness,—
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of the choice ones of God, and an acknowledging of truth that [is] according to piety,
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of the elect of God and the acknowledging of the truth, which is according to godliness:
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Paul a seruant of God, and an Apostle of Iesus Christ, according to the Faith of Gods Elect, and the acknowledging of the trueth which is after godlinesse,
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— PAULOS, a servant of Aloha, and apostle of Jeshu Meshiha, for the faith of the chosen ones of Aloha, and the knowledge of the truth which is in the fear of Aloha;
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— PAUL, a servant of God, and a legate of Jesus the Messiah; according to the faith of the elect of God, and the knowledge of the truth which is in the fear of God,

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Paul, 3972
{3972} Prime
Of Latin origin; (little; but remotely from a derivative of G3973, meaning the same); Paulus, the name of a Roman and of an apostle.
a servant 1401
{1401} Prime
From G1210; a slave (literally or figuratively, involuntarily or voluntarily; frequently therefore in a qualified sense of subjection or subserviency).
of God, 2316
{2316} Prime
Of uncertain affinity; a deity, especially (with G3588) the supreme Divinity; figuratively a magistrate; by Hebraism very.
and 1161
{1161} Prime
A primary particle (adversative or continuative); but, and, etc.
an apostle 652
{0652} Prime
From G0649; a delegate; specifically an ambassador of the Gospel; officially a commissioner of Christ ('apostle'), (with miraculous powers).
of Jesus 2424
{2424} Prime
Of Hebrew origin [H3091]; Jesus (that is, Jehoshua), the name of our Lord and two (three) other Israelites.
Christ, 5547
{5547} Prime
From G5548; anointed, that is, the Messiah, an epithet of Jesus.
according x2596
(2596) Complement
A primary particle; (preposition) down (in place or time), in varied relations (according to the case [genitive, dative or accusative] with which it is joined).
to y2596
[2596] Standard
A primary particle; (preposition) down (in place or time), in varied relations (according to the case [genitive, dative or accusative] with which it is joined).
the faith 4102
{4102} Prime
From G3982; persuasion, that is, credence; moral conviction (of religious truth, or the truthfulness of God or a religious teacher), especially reliance upon Christ for salvation; abstractly constancy in such profession; by extension the system of religious (Gospel) truth itself.
of God's 2316
{2316} Prime
Of uncertain affinity; a deity, especially (with G3588) the supreme Divinity; figuratively a magistrate; by Hebraism very.
elect, 1588
{1588} Prime
From G1586; select; by implication favorite.
and 2532
{2532} Prime
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
the acknowledging 1922
{1922} Prime
From G1921; recognition, that is, (by implication) full discernment, acknowledgement.
of the truth 225
{0225} Prime
From G0227; truth.
which 3588
{3588} Prime

The masculine, feminine (second) and neuter (third) forms, in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom).
is after 2596
{2596} Prime
A primary particle; (preposition) down (in place or time), in varied relations (according to the case [genitive, dative or accusative] with which it is joined).
godliness; 2150
{2150} Prime
From G2152; piety; specifically the gospel scheme.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Titus 1:1

_ _ Titus 1:1-16. Address: For what end Titus was left in Crete. Qualifications for elders: Gainsayers in Crete needing reproof.

_ _ servant of God — not found elsewhere in the same connection. In Romans 1:1 it is “servant of Jesus Christ” (Galatians 1:10; Philippians 1:1; compare Acts 16:17; Revelation 1:1; Revelation 15:3). In Romans 1:1, there follows, “called to be an apostle,” which corresponds to the general designation of the office first, “servant of God,” here, followed by the special description, “apostle of Jesus Christ.” The full expression of his apostolic office answers, in both Epistles, to the design, and is a comprehensive index to the contents. The peculiar form here would never have proceeded from a forger.

_ _ according to the faith — rather, “for,” “with a view to subserve the faith”; this is the object of my apostleship (compare Titus 1:4, Titus 1:9; Romans 1:5).

_ _ the elect — for whose sake we ought to endure all things (2 Timothy 2:10). This election has its ground, not in anything belonging to those thus distinguished, but in the purpose and will of God from everlasting (2 Timothy 1:9; Romans 8:30-33; compare Luke 18:7; Ephesians 1:4; Colossians 3:12). Acts 13:48 shows that all faith on the part of the elect, rests on the divine foreordination: they do not become elect by their faith, but receive faith, and so become believers, because they are elect.

_ _ and the acknowledging of the truth — “and (for promoting) the full knowledge of the truth,” that is, the Christian truth (Ephesians 1:13).

_ _ after godliness — that is, which belongs to piety: opposed to the knowledge which has not for its object the truth, but error, doctrinal and practical (Titus 1:11, Titus 1:16; 1 Timothy 6:3); or even which has for its object mere earthly truth, not growth in the divine life. “Godliness,” or “piety,” is a term peculiar to the Pastoral Epistles: a fact explained by the apostle having in them to combat doctrine tending to “ungodliness” (2 Timothy 2:16; compare Titus 2:11, Titus 2:12).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Titus 1:1-4

_ _ Here is the preface to the epistle, showing,

_ _ I. The writer. Paul, a Gentile name taken by the apostle of the Gentiles, Acts 13:9, Acts 13:46, Acts 13:47. Ministers will accommodate even smaller matters, so that they may be any furthering of acceptance in their work. When the Jews rejected the gospel, and the Gentiles received it, we read no more of this apostle by his Jewish name Saul, but by his Roman one, Paul. A servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ. Here he is described by his relation and office: A servant of God, not in the general sense only, as a man and a Christian, but especially as a minister, serving God in the gospel of his Son, Romans 1:9. This is a high honour; it is the glory of angels that they are ministering spirits, and sent forth to minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation, Hebrews 1:14. Paul is described more especially as a chief minister, an apostle of Jesus Christ; one who had seen the Lord, and was immediately called and commissioned by him, and had his doctrine from him. Observe, The highest officers in the church are but servants. (Much divinity and devotion are comprehended in the inscriptions of the epistles.) The apostles of Jesus Christ, who were employed to spread and propagate his religion, were therein also the servants of God; they did not set up any thing inconsistent with the truths and duties of natural religion. Christianity, which they preached, was in order to clear and enforce those natural principles, as well as to advance them, and to superadd what was fit and necessary in man's degenerate and revolted state: therefore the apostles of Jesus Christ were the servants of God, according to the faith of God's elect. Their doctrine agreed with the faith of all the elect from the beginning of the world, and was for propagating and promoting the same. Observe, There are elect of God (1 Peter 1:2), and in these the Holy Spirit works precious divine faith, proper to those who are chosen to eternal life (2 Thessalonians 2:13, 2 Thessalonians 2:14): God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation, through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth, whereunto he called you by our gospel. Faith is the first principle of sanctification. And the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness. The gospel is truth; the great, sure, and saving truth (Colossians 1:5), the word of the truth of the gospel. Divine faith rests not on fallible reasonings and probable opinions, but on the infallible word, the truth itself, which is after godliness, of a godly nature and tendency, pure, and purifying the heart of the believer. By this mark judge of doctrines and of spirits — whether they be of God or not; what is impure, and prejudicial to true piety and practical religion, cannot be of divine original. All gospel truth is after godliness, teaching and nourishing reverence and fear of God, and obedience to him; it is truth not only to be known, but acknowledged; it must be held forth in word and practice, Philippians 2:15, Philippians 2:16. With the heart man believes to righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation, Romans 10:10. Such as retain the truth in unrighteousness neither know nor believe as they ought. To bring to this knowledge and faith, and to the acknowledging and professing of the truth which is after godliness, is the great end of the gospel ministry, even of the highest degree and order in it; their teachings should have this chief aim, to beget faith and confirm in it. In (or for) hope of eternal life, Titus 1:2. This is the further intent of the gospel, to beget hope as well as faith; to take off the mind and heart from the world, and to raise them to heaven and the things above. The faith and godliness of Christians lead to eternal life, and give hope and well-grounded expectation of it; for God, that cannot lie, hath promised it. It is the honour of God that he cannot lie or deceive: and this is the comfort of believers, whose treasure is laid up in his faithful promises. But how is he said to promise before the world began? Answer, By promise some understand his decree: he purposed it in his eternal counsels, which were as it were his promise in embryo: or rather, say some, pro chronn ainin is before ancient times, or many years ago, referring to the promise darkly delivered, Genesis 3:15. Here is the stability and antiquity of the promise of eternal life to the saints. God, who cannot lie, hath promised before the world began, that is, many ages since. How excellent then is the gospel, which was the matter of divine promise so early! how much to be esteemed by us, and what thanks due for our privilege beyond those before us! Blessed are your eyes, for they see, etc. No wonder if the contempt of it be punished severely, since he has not only promised it of old, but (Titus 1:3) has in due times manifested his word through preaching; that is, made that his promise, so darkly delivered of old, in due time (the proper season before appointed) more plain by preaching; that which some called foolishness of preaching has been thus honoured. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God, by the word preached. Which is committed unto me. The ministry is a trust; none taketh this honour, but he who is thereunto appointed; and whoso is appointed and called must preach the word. 1 Corinthians 9:16, Woe is unto me if I preach not the gospel. Nonpreaching ministers are none of the apostle's successors. According to the commandment of God our Saviour. Preaching is a work appointed by a God as a Saviour. See a proof here of Christ's deity, for by him was the gospel committed to Paul when he was converted (Acts 9:15, Acts 9:17, and Acts 22:10, Acts 22:14, Acts 22:15), and again when Christ appeared to him, Acts 22:17. He therefore is this Saviour; not but that the whole Timothy concur therein: the Father saves by the Son through the Spirit, and all concur in sending ministers. Let none rest therefore in men's calling, without God's; he furnishes, inclines, authorizes, and gives opportunity for the work.

_ _ II. The person written to, who is described, 1. By his name, Titus, a Gentile Greek, yet called both to the faith and ministry. Observe, the grace of God is free and powerful. What worthiness or preparation was there in one of heathen stock and education? 2. By his spiritual relation to the apostle: My own (or my genuine) son, not by natural generation, but by supernatural regeneration. I have begotten you through the gospel, said he to the Corinthians, 1 Corinthians 4:15. Ministers are spiritual fathers to those whom they are the means of converting, and will tenderly affect and care for them, and must be answerably regarded by them. “My own son after the common faith, that faith which is common to all the regenerate, and which thou hast in truth, and expressest to the life.” This might be said to distinguish Titus from hypocrites and false teachers, and to recommend him to the regard of the Cretans, as being among them a lively image of the apostle himself, in faith, and life, and heavenly doctrine. To this Titus, deservedly so dear to the apostle, is,

_ _ III. The salutation and prayer, wishing all blessings to him: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour. Here are, 1. The blessings wished: Grace, mercy, and peace. Grace, the free favour of God, and acceptance with him. Mercy, the fruits of that favour, in pardon of sins, and freedom from all miseries by it, both here and hereafter. And peace, the positive effect and fruit of mercy. Peace with God through Christ who is our peace, and with the creatures and ourselves; outward and inward peace, comprehending all good whatsoever, that makes for our happiness in time and to eternity. Observe, Grace is the fountain of all blessings. Mercy, and peace, and all good, spring out of this. Get into God's favour, and all must be well; for, 2. These are the persons from whom blessings are wished: From God the Father, the fountain of all good. Every blessing, every comfort, comes to us from God as a Father; he is the Father of all by creation, but of the good by adoption and regeneration. And the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour, as the way and means of procurement and conveyance. All is from the Father by the Son, who is Lord by nature, heir of all things, and our Lord, Redeemer, and head, ordering and ruling his members. All are put under him; we hold of him, as in capite, and owe subjection and obedience to him, who is also Jesus and Christ, the anointed Saviour, and especially our Saviour, who believe in him, delivering us from sin and hell, and bringing us to heaven and happiness.

_ _ Thus far is the preface to the epistle; then follows the entrance into the matter, by signifying the end of Titus's being left in Crete.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Titus 1:1

Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ — Titles suitable to the person of Paul, and the office he was assigning to Titus. According to the faith — The propagating of which is the proper business of an apostle. A servant of God — According to the faith of the elect. An apostle of Jesus Christ — According to the knowledge of the truth. We serve God according to the measure of our faith: we fulfil our public office according to the measure of our knowledge. The truth that is after godliness — Which in every point runs parallel with and supports the vital, spiritual worship of God; and, indeed, has no other end or scope. These two verses contain the sum of Christianity, which Titus was always to have in his eye. Of the elect of God — Of all real Christians

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Titus 1:1

Paul, (1) a (a) servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's (b) elect, (2) and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;

(1) He vouches his apostleship (not for Titus, but for the Cretian's sake) both by the testimony of his outward calling, and by his consent in which he agrees with all the elect from the beginning of the world.

(a) A minister, as Christ himself, in his office of minister and head of the Prophets, is called a servant; (Isaiah 43:10).

(b) Of those whom God has chosen. (2) The faith in which all the elect agree, is the true and sincere knowledge of God for this purpose, that worshipping God correctly, they may at length obtain everlasting life according to the promise of God, who is true, which promise was exhibited in Christ in due time according to his eternal purpose.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
a servant:

1 Chronicles 6:49 But Aaron and his sons offered upon the altar of the burnt offering, and on the altar of incense, [and were appointed] for all the work of the [place] most holy, and to make an atonement for Israel, according to all that Moses the servant of God had commanded.
Romans 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called [to be] an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,
Philippians 1:1 Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:


John 10:26-27 But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. ... My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
Acts 13:48 And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:
2 Thessalonians 2:13-14 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: ... Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Timothy 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and [of] a good conscience, and [of] faith unfeigned:

the acknowledging:

Colossians 2:2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
2 Timothy 2:23 But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.
2 Timothy 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
1 John 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: [(but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also].


Titus 2:11-12 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, ... Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
1 Timothy 1:4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: [so do].
1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
1 Timothy 6:3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, [even] the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
2 Peter 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that [pertain] unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
2 Peter 3:11 [Seeing] then [that] all these things shall be dissolved, what manner [of persons] ought ye to be in [all] holy conversation and godliness,
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Chain-Reference Bible Search

1Ch 6:49. Jn 10:26. Ac 13:48. Ro 1:1. Ep 2:8. Php 1:1. Col 2:2. 2Th 2:13. 1Ti 1:4, 5; 3:16; 6:3. 2Ti 2:23, 25. Tit 2:11. 2P 1:3; 3:11. 1Jn 2:23.

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User-Posted Comments on Titus 1:1

Many read this to say that when a Christian learns truth it leads to godliness. While other scriptures teach a similar thing, this verse really says those who live a godly life will have an ongoing knowledge of the truth given to them by God which they experience.

(Many translators have reordered the verse to read that knowing truths leads to godliness, but this cannot be, since in the Greek the word "after" is based on means "absolute accord". Well there is no way knowledge of the truth absolutely leads Christians to godly behavior. It may of course, but it is not absolute. That is the problem with translating it that way. However, it is absolutely true that in living a godly life God is going to reveal His truth to born-again Christians (the elect).
- Walt H (3/28/2009 12:08:16 PM) []
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