Jeremiah 49:23-50:46; Titus 1:1-16; Psalms 97:1-98:9; Proverbs 26:13-16
Today is the 26th day of October. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I’m Brian and, as is the case every day, it’s great to be here with you as we take the next step forward on the adventure through the Bible this year. And that adventure will take us back into the book of Jeremiah today and then we will be beginning Paul’s letter to Titus when we get to the New Testament. So, from the Names of God Bible this week, Jeremiah chapter 49 verse 23 through 50 verse 46 today.
Okay. Yesterday, we finished Paul’s second letter to Timothy, which is thought to be the final writings, the final writing, the final communication from Paul before he was martyred, before he was executed. And, so, that brings us to Paul’s epistle, or his letter to Titus. And this is the third of three of what we know of as the pastoral letters, which are first and second Timothy and Titus. And they are called this because Paul is writing to his sons in the faith, directly, like as a personal letter, rather than to a church, and is addressing their personal needs and instructing them directly as leaders, as pastors. So, he’s writing as a pastoral figure to his sons in the faith, who are now also pastors. And Titus was an early convert and followed Jesus at the witness of the apostle Paul and was able to accompany Barnabas and Paul to Jerusalem. So, like to the Jerusalem Council, where circumcision, right, this issue that has cropped up and all of Paul’s writings. This Gentile…ya know…how Gentiles grafted in to this story…all of that in those decisions. Titus got to see a lot of that stuff, a lot of the things that happened to form the early church. And Titus was definitely on Paul’s third missionary journey. And Paul often sent Titus as a messenger to different churches to offer pastoral care and to send and bring messages and to let Paul know how things were going as we see in his letters. This letter, this personal letter to Titus, was written probably around A.D. 63. So, the year 63, right around the same time Paul wrote the first letter to Timothy. So, Paul writes to his son in the faith Timothy and then he writes to a son in the faith Titus around the same time and then the letter was sent to Crete, where Titus was the pastor of the churches there, whereas the letters to Timothy were, obviously, sent to Ephesus, where Timothy was the pastor. And, so, one of the motivations for Paul to write a personal letter to Titus was to encourage him, to encourage Titus to finish the work that had begun there, and also to bestow apostolic authority to Titus from Paul so that Titus would have this letter if anyone came and questioned whether or not he had any right to be there leading anything. Right? If they questioned his spiritual authority in the church he would have this personal letter from Paul. And it also set down in writing the things that Paul had instructed Titus to do as the churches were being built up. So, it serves as reinforcement to things that Paul had spoken to Titus. So, Titus is a personal letter, like we talked about. And, so, having it gives us an intimate look at the instructions that were given from Paul, the spiritual father to Titus, the spiritual son who had been raised up in the faith into leadership. And these letters, the letters to Timothy and Titus, are very helpful for anyone in authority or leadership today. They deal with the kinds of things leaders still face and they still bring a great amount of instruction and encouragement, even today. And, so, we begin. Paul’s letter to Titus, chapter 1.
Okay. So, as we begin this letter to Titus from Paul that will only take us a few days to move our way through, we immediately recognize some of the features in Titus as similar to what Paul wrote in his first letter to Timothy, and these include characteristics that need to be present in a person’s life if they seek to lead God’s people. So, we can see that Paul had taught this to Titus and to Timothy but then reiterated it in writing to them, not only to remind them, but also to give them the backup. So, when someone’s going through this ordination process and maybe some people dispute some of these things, then these guys, Timothy and Titus, have these personal letters from the apostle Paul to show, this is what the apostle Paul has taught us to do, this is what is right to do, these are the criteria necessary to move forward in spiritual leadership. And then Paul writes to Titus, specifically to the place that he’s in, like in the circumstances that he’s in, which are different than Timothy’s. So, Titus is on an island that is south of Greece out in the middle of the Mediterranean ocean, which is quite different than Ephesus, which is on the mainland, now a part of modern-day Turkey, which is where Timothy was. So, these are far enough apart that they have different cultures and a different way of life and a lot of Jewish people lived on Crete. And, so, we see Cretans first mentioned in the book of Acts as some of the people who first heard the apostles on the day of Pentecost, like, when the Holy Spirit fell upon them and then they began to minister, and Peter gives this message that is compelling, and thousands of people begin to follow Jesus. So, Cretans are among those people, which is probably how the gospel of Jesus first found its way onto the island, through the stories of what they had witnessed in Jerusalem. So, there’s a thriving Jewish community on Crete, and even though there was this Jerusalem Council that would welcome Gentiles into the family of God through Jesus, we’ve seen the tension, we’ve seen it all along, between people who grew up Jewish who wanted to follow this Rabbi, Jesus, but couldn’t get their heads around the fact that God might be welcoming the whole world to come back to him through Jesus. And, so, there’s all this tension over all the traditions. Right? Circumcision is the one that boils to the top the most but religious tradition is definitely a point of contention in this new movement. And, so, Paul says directly to Titus, there are many believers, especially converts from Judaism who are rebellious and they speak nonsense and deceive people and they need to be quieted because they’re ruining whole families by teaching things that that they shouldn’t be teaching. So, Paul tells Titus, listen, you’ve got to instruct the people that they shouldn’t pay attention to Jewish myths or commands given by people who are always rejecting the truth. Because we have to remember, a lot of things were forming around what Jesus represented. A lot of conversation as this faith grew up was had. And the Jewish people, they have an ancient history, and it had and has many sects to it, entire mystical ways of looking at the world. So, it’s not surprising that Jesus would can fall into some of these categories as people consider what it really all means. And, so, Paul, in his pastoral letters to Timothy and Titus, address these kinds of things by just saying, look, the truth has been revealed, we’ve been teaching it from day one, we’ve been moving around and sharing this good news all along, and now people are trying to do all these add-ons. Stay true to the simple gospel message that you were taught and make sure that you teach it truly and hold true and keep the faith, which is what Paul is telling Titus to do today.
Father there is no shortage of mystical thought about You in the world today. There has never really been a time that we haven’t been trying to figure You out. And, we confess, that we can’t even figure our own selves out. So, how would we figure You out, other than the simple faith of understanding that You indwell us and that we are being changed into your likeness through the process of sanctification. Each and every day, we are being set apart and made holy and invited to live from that place, that true essential place, each and every day. And, so, we continue to invite Your Holy Spirit to instruct us in the way that we should go, the path that we should walk, the things that we should pick up, the things that we should consider, the things that we should reject. All leading us on the narrow path that leads to life, because You have promised to lead us into all truth. And, so, we defer, we surrender and invite You to lead and guide us. Come, Holy Spirit. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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And a couple of days ago we released this little fireside chat, discussing the Global Campfire Initiative – an initiative to continue to build all of the infrastructure that it is going to take to move us forward and face outward. And one of the key components of that is the brand-new daily app that we will be releasing, in a big risk, as a free app so that there are zero barriers to a person being able to come in and hear the spoken word of God every day. But it’s a step that we need to take together. And, so, we have inaugurated something that’s been internal, the Global Campfire Initiative, just bringing it to the community, inviting you to participate. And we printed 500 patch show prints here in the rolling hills of Tennessee using letterpress, ancient - old, not ancient - technology to create these beautiful posters that are just printed very, very old-school. Each one’s a little bit different and they’re completely frameable. They say Global Campfire on them and the Daily Audio Bible and the rolling hills of Tennessee. You can see all that at dailyaudiobible.com, you can see what they look like. We’re inviting you to participate in the Global Campfire Initiative. And so, for those who are able to contribute $200 or more toward this, and again I unpacked it all, that’s why I made this specific fireside chat program, because I wanted to be able to tell the whole story. And, so, if you haven’t had a chance to listen to that, go back and listen to that and it will all make complete sense. But we printed 500 of these posters for 500 people who can contribute in this way so that we can just knock this out and move this development forward. And I expect that we will run out of those posters within the next few days. So, check out that program. If you had a chance to listen to it yet, that will give you all of the details. And then, you can find the Global Campfire Initiative and contribute to it at dailyaudiobible.com. Just scroll down to the initiatives section and you’ll find it, or there’s a banner for it at the Daily Audio Bible shop as well. Easy to find. So, check that out and help us to do exactly what I said, face outward, and to continue to build that the platform that will allow us to dream and move forward together. If you have contributed to the Global Campfire Initiative and when we’re sending you one of these posters, we will also be inviting you to experience the new Daily Audio Bible app early and we’ll be sending out those invitations around November 1st. So, you can experience it, and a lot of the new features that are included, and it’s a complete…I mean from the ground up…it’s a completely rethought app, and the first of its kind for our community. And, so, you’ll be able to experience that early, give us some feedback, and help us to squash any bugs that might still exist before it’s released into the wild. And this is just the beginning, just the beginning of the…finally…having the technology to really connect things, the way that we have dreamed about for several years. So, thank you. Thank you for your partnership on the Global Campfire Initiative.
If you have a prayer request or comment 877-942-4253 is the number that you can call because that’s one of the things that are distinctly beautiful about this community, is our love for one another and willingness to be the body of Christ in this world. And part of that is to hold each other up in prayer and rejoice with each other when we are rejoicing and weep with each other when we are weeping. We’ve done that well. And as we begin this initiative, this Global Campfire Initiative, over time, we’re going to have many, many more ways to do it well. So, your prayers over all of that are coveted and necessary and I thank you deeply.
And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.
Community Prayers and Praise Reports:
Hello everyone. This is Jay calling from New Jersey. I just wanted to take a moment to just thank every single person. You know, two minutes just isn’t enough time to express and convey how I feel and say every name and thank every person…and just…ah…I’m just overwhelmed by the amount of love this community showing me. And…I just…you know…God works in mysterious ways and we, in our lives, are faced with decisions that we ourselves have to make…and there’s consequences to every decision that we make. Sometimes they are good, sometimes they are bad. But God is always there. And as far as I’m concerned, DAB family, you’ve always been there for me. Heavenly Father, in the name of Jesus Christ, I thank you now. I praise You and I glorify You for the wonderful, amazing, loving, spiritual, prayerful family that I have in the Daily Audio Bible. In the name of Jesus, Christ I pray. Amen.
Thank you so much. My name is Thomas K. I’m from West Point, Mississippi. I’m requesting prayer, especially for tomorrow, Monday, which will be the 23rd of October. I have an operation on my throat. I’m asking all saints of God to please pray for me as I pray for you and your family. Thank God and bless all of you. In Jesus’ name, we do say, Amen.
Good morning DAB community. This is Richard firstname.lastname@example.org. Today is Monday the 23rd of October. I haven’t been listening to the DAB readings for quite a while…and now I’m back. It’s good to allow the word of God to wash over you and submit to his word in your life. I know, at times, I’ve been disobedient and rebellious and have tried to go my own way but when I come back to the word it’s always reassuring, that God is washing me with His word, as I listen. And as I listen, the enemy wants to fight against me paying attention. He’ll put in little thoughts, thoughts of sin. The enemy puts in thoughts of just anything to distract you from letting the word of God wash over those things. And I want to encourage you today, community, to just let the word of God do its work in the washing of the water of the word. Let it build your faith and keep you is submission to the Holy Spirit. That’s what I have to say today family.
Hi DAB family. It’s ____ from Carlisle. I just had to call in and make sure that all of my brothers and sister in the DAB family are sharing the app for this because many, many people are going to have hard times being in and out of churches, but this is a way to stay planted in the word of God, no matter what. And I had to walk away. And I haven’t been able to find a church for a long time and I don’t know what I would’ve done if I wouldn’t have been able to still stay rooted in some type of real God growing. And, so, I’m not one of those real big tech people, people that like to go out and ah…you know…be in all that kind of stuff…I’m just one of those bookworm people. But, truthfully, this app has changed my life and I don’t know what I would do without it. So, I say that to all of you guys. Make sure you’re sharing it with your friends and your family because you have no idea how much they need it. I love all of you guys and may God bless you all, especially Brian and the soldiers that come on here and pray. You know who you are, we all know who you are, and we thank God every time we hear your voice. So, may God just bless you all. Amen.