Titus ◦ Chapter 1
1 Paul, a serving friend of God and an ambassador of Jesus Christ, sent to inspire God's friends with ever-increasing confidence and trust in him and his methods, and to promote the Remedy which results in cleansing the mind and the development of godly character:2 My mission is to reveal the truth about God and his kingdom, and thereby inspire hope in our future eternal life which God has promised before time began–and God always keeps his promises.3 At just the right time, God stepped into human history and procured the Remedy, and I have been entrusted with spreading this Remedy by the command of God our Savior.4 To Titus, my faithful partner in our common goal to spread the Remedy: Strength, love and peace from God the Father and Jesus Christ our Savior.5 I left you in Crete so you could finish getting the spiritual health-care teams set up, appointing spiritual leaders in each town, just as I instructed.6 Spiritual leaders, in order to be effective, must be respected in the community, not be polygamists, and their children must have partaken of the Remedy. They should demonstrate their healing of character by their cooperative and self-controlled lifestyles.7 It is essential that leaders represent God correctly — this means that they must have mature characters, worthy of admiration. They must not be dictators nor be angry or gruff with those who disagree with them, not be drunkards or aggressive, and never pursue dishonesty or self-advancement.8 Instead, leaders must reveal Christ in all their actions. They must make strangers and the hurting ones feel welcome. They must love what is good, be self-governed, be ethical and moral, lovingly help those in need, and exercise good judgment.9 They must be solidly grounded in the truth–understanding humankind's proper diagnosis and the only true Remedy, so that they can effectively administer it and refute those who peddle false treatments.10 You must stay vigilant, because there are many people who rebel against the true Remedy and use eloquent speech to deceive–especially those who promote legal salvation schemes.11 Their arguments must be met with the truth and shown to be false, because they are enslaving entire families into fear and distorted views of God by teaching concepts that should never be taught. And often, they do this just to advance themselves.12 This practice of lying is well known: even a famous Cretan prophet has said, "Cretans are accomplished liars, barbaric savages, and shiftless hedonists."13 Sadly, this description has proved to be true, therefore you must oppose them sharply: don't leave the distinctions blurry or ambiguous but make it clear, so that the people can reject the distortions, partake of the true Remedy, become mature in character,14 stop listening to Jewish and legal myths, and stop following the instructions of those who reject the Remedy.15 No ceremony or ritual can defile those who have taken the Remedy and are healed in heart and mind, but those who have rejected the Remedy remain terminal despite all their ceremonies and rituals. In fact, their minds and consciences are necrotic with selfishness.16 They claim to know God, but their selfish and fear-based lives deny him and his kingdom of love. Their rejection of the Remedy and their claims that selfishness is actually healthy are disgusting! They are in violation of God's design for life and thereby unfit and incapable of doing anything good.