Who Are You In Christ?
I was thinking today, who would I relate to most in the New Covenant? I mean, Jesus talked about the Kingdom of God in parables and stories to the crowds prior to His death and resurrection. I would want to be after that. This leaves out Lazarus, Bartimaus, and a host of others.
So, after the resurrection, who can I rerate to the most? Apollos perhaps. He was versed in the Old Testament but he still needed more revelation. Timothy (my namesake) perhaps. Half Jew and half Greek but Paul had him ministering to the Jews as well so he had him circumcised.
How about Annanias? Boy, what a directive he was given by God! To go out and minister to the persecutor of Christians and give him healing and a message. I am often like that. I am given a specific task and then comes the doubt. As I step out in faith, God acts.
I think most of all I can rerate to Titus. A younger man given the task of elder in a set of churches. He was given the task of shaping and guiding men and women in relationship with God in the New Covenant. How can you not like Titus? He received instruction on leadership, teaching, and growing in maturity. A cursory reading of the book gives me great comfort in knowing there is instruction for a church to grow in a healthy way.
This brings me to the question: why did Paul have Timothy circumcised and not Titus? The answer lies in who they were ministering to. Paul kept Timothy with him to minister to both Jews and Gentiles. Titus was left on the island of Crete to minister to just Gentiles. I think Paul says it best in Acts chapter 21 where he states that those Christians who are Jews by birth can obey the Law with its ordinances if they want to. Later in the chapter he states that there are only four requirements for the Gentiles to live a clean life: stay away from meat sacrificed to idols, do not eat blood, do not eat strangled animals, and refrain from sexual immorality. We are taking about lifestyles and not salvation. Perhaps that is what Paul meant when he told Titus:
"Do not get involved in foolish discussions about spiritual genealogies or in quarrels and fights about obedience to Jewish laws. These things are foolish and a waste of time."
(Titus 3:9 NLT)