Happy Mother’s Day!

Paul addressed the importance of Moms when he wrote to his coworker, Titus, around 1950 years ago. Titus chapter 2 starting at verse 1 begins our Mothers’ Day message.

Please read Titus chapter 2.

Let’s go back to the beginning of the chapter and break down what Paul is instructing Titus to teach:

Teach what accords with sound doctrine.  The Message paraphrase of the Bible says it this way, to Titus as the leader of his church: “Your job is to speak out on things that make for solid doctrine.” Moms, you are specially mentioned in this when you live as an example of an excellent wife (Proverbs 31: 10 – 31), support your husband’s leadership role in your family, and train younger women in wise behavior and good judgment through your living example. Those younger women include daughters in the next few verses as well. And those instructions are

  • For Dads. Moms, when you support your husband’s leadership role in your family, you are supporting this Bible text for older men. By “older” we are not talking about eligibility for a senior citizens discount. We are talking about roles. Moms and Dads, by definition you are older than your children. Dads, your important role in having a sober mind, being dignified, self-controlled, and sound in faith, love, and steadfastness means endurance, or the ability to finish well as Christ did. Moms, you have a role in helping the older men, such as your husbands, in supporting them to finish well. And this example will trickle down to the younger men, or your sons.
  • Moms, you are examples for your daughters in particular here in this text. The Greek word used here for “train” is sophronizo. Literally, it means to “train in wise behavior and good judgment.” Now, training usually has a formal component to it. A corporate trainer holds classes or seminars or workshops with specific skills objectives via a curriculum that he or she uses in order for the trainee to learn a specific skill or accomplish a specific objective. Well, older women (and I do not mean “older” in the sense of grey hair or getting mail from AARP), you are by older than someone else, such as your daughters. You are to be reverent, not gossip, not be drunk, and teach what is good. The result of this training then living by this example should be that a younger woman would automatically learn how to (by example) love their husbands and children, be self-controlled, pure, be domestic and know how to run a household, be kind, and support the leadership role of their husband in their family. Now, without a formal training program, the only way a younger person could learn this from an older person is to watch them. Moms, you are the trainers teaching the Gospel by living it. The Message paraphrase says “By looking at them, the younger women will know how to.” Sound familiar? We know how much children watch their parents and learn automatically. By the way, our formal training program is simply the Bible.

And why should we do this? The end of v. 5 tells us. The Message says “We don’t want anyone looking down on God’s Message because of their behavior. Also, guide the young men to live disciplined lives.” Moms, your example of Gospel living will not only influence your husbands and children, and particularly the younger women, your daughters, but will be the utmost example of the Gospel lived out loud. True Christian living will commend the Gospel to others.

Go back to the beginning of v. 5 please. A comment on the “working at home” part of this verse. This does not say you have to only work at home or prohibit working outside the home. If you look at Proverbs 31, verses 16 and 18 and 24 discuss three ways that an excellent wife works outside the home. Because of these and other things, such as teaching kindness (in verse 26), her children know they are blessed to have her as their Mom; her husband praises her and knows she is the best wife he could have ever found. And if you are still not convinced to read Proverbs 31: 10 – 31 yet this week, verse 13 does mention shopping as a characteristic of an excellent wife. Although it is shopping for wool and flax – that may not be as exciting.

Titus 2: 7-8 also mentions models of good works, teaching integrity, teaching dignity, and teaching soundly so that no one who disagrees can even start to think about winning an argument against the Gospel and won’t say anything bad about the Gospel or they will be looked upon negatively just for doing this.

Now, Moms, I know you will put a lot of pressure on yourselves to live up to this. If fact, you are often pretty good at feeling guilty. But after this great list of things that no Mom can measure up to all of the time, Paul does tell us how we can accomplish everything on this list. See, we can’t do it all. But by His grace, we can. And we will. Verse 11 reads that the grace of God which brought salvation to all trains us to renounce the ungodly things in our culture, to live self-controlled and upright in reputation in our present day. See, Moms, we are waiting eagerly for our Hope, capital H, Jesus, to return. And because we have Hope, seeing Him in all His glory, our Redeemer who lives to purify us as His own and who excites our hearts to eagerly do good while we are here on earth, no one can disregard the Gospel, and no one can say we cannot accomplish the things talked about in this chapter. Moms, Paul took the time to write in a letter to a church leader all these Mom things that make for solid doctrine. Paul told church leader Titus to build up the courage of those in his church regarding these Mom things and not to let anyone put him down when he declared these Mom things to the rest of his congregation. It was that important. Thank you, Moms, for teaching all those you influence in our families and in our church. You accomplish these things that make for solid doctrine through His Grace alone, living the Gospel out loud.

Happy Mother’s Day!