Likewise, tell the older women to be reverent in behavior, not to be slanderers or slaves to drink; they are to teach what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be self-controlled, chaste, good managers of the household, kind, being submissive to their husbands, so that the word of God may not be discredited. ( Titus 2:3-5)
A couple of weeks ago my husband and I had an animated discussion concerning the various ‘issues’ that face our marriage and many marriages today. Then he quoted my Bible Teacher the one and only Pastor Jon Courson who said: and i parapharse “If older women would teach and walk with younger women as commanded in God’s Word they would drastically reduce the time pastors dedicate to counselling and in turn that time would be redirected to the teaching of God’s Word”
That conversation and statement took me to Titus 2:3-5 and I have been musing over those Words for some time now. Wondering out to myself the impact among those who call themselves Christians if we wholly fully obeyed God’s Word: and for this specific discourse, if older women obeyed God’s command to carry themselves in a respectable manner and then to teach what is good and to encourage the young women.
What impact would such obedience have on the Christian family unit?
What impact would such obedience have on the Pastorate?
What impact would such obedience have in the Body of Christ?
What impact would such obedience have in the society it occurs?
It is these questions that have had me thinking and praying and meditating.
One of the most important truth I had to contend with and embrace is that, the obedience of the command under study (Titus 2:3-5) begins with me then I can spread it to other women practically. This lesson is not a theory lesson but a practical one through and through. Three things older women are called to do: be reverent in behavior; not to be slanderous or slaves to drink; to teach what is good. The direct result of the three is that young women will be encouraged to: love their husbands; to love their children; to be self controlled; to be chaste; to be good managers of the households; to be kind; to be submissive to their husbands. And when that happens it brings credit to the Word of God.
Be reverent in behavior
What does it mean to be reverent in behaviour? To whom is such reverence accorded?
Reverent behaviour is deeply respectful behaviour. Some of what is defined as respectful behaviour is steeped in culture but overall God’s Word is a guide into reverent behaviour. Older women as to conduct themselves respectfully. First is towards God, in their relationship with God. One of the most obvious yet overlooked ways to show reverence to God is to obey His Word: period. But we are so drawn into sacrifices and works that obedience is more often than not relegated to the secondary line. Let the warning/judgement God meted out on King Saul through the prophet Samuel cause to reconsider our ways and daily chose obedience:
22 And Samuel said,
“Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices,
as in obedience to the voice of the Lord?
Surely, to obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed than the fat of rams.
23 For rebellion is no less a sin than divination,
and stubbornness is like iniquity and idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord,
he has also rejected you from being king.” (1 Samuel 15:22-23)
Secondly towards their own self’s: how they dress, how they talk, how they spend their time, who they spend their time with are just a few examples. It is a sad day we live in, this are truly the end times. The days where older women dress like teenagers, where older women are competing with their daughters and grand daughters in every fashion sense. Dignity and self respect has been thrown out of the window and we are seeing mroe and more is a confused ‘older woman’. WHile the young women grope around searching for mentors, for mothers we have chosen not to take up that responsibility rather indulge ourselves in our own selfish desires. May God, forgive us and help us.
Thirdly towards others and top on the list of others is their ‘own husband’. Respect of husband is one straightforward yet many a times slippery issue. I cannot even for one second pretend to have excelled in this matter. My own self continues to rear up its ugly head over and over again, and I ask the Lord to help me submit to His Lordship and as a result submit to my ‘own husband’. Older women are to respect their ‘own husbands’ and to also respect other people both of the house of faith and outside the house of faith.
Not to be slanderers or slaves to drink
Slandering is actually lying, because it involves making false statements about other people and as a result you damage their reputation and good standing amongst others. It is evil, it is wicked. Many women do not actually set out to lie about others but they do no by exaggerating the truth or even diminishing it: sometimes also by coating a strand of truth with lies and hearsay. Older women, we are commanded not to be slanderers. The Word of God is full of teaching and instructions on the kind of words we are to speak, on the type of speech that is to characterize us. We must seek to learn what God says about how and what we should speak then obey that Word.
Drinking, especially social drinking is a phenomenon that has swept our society today. It is not so new in the fact that in the days past women were brewers of local brews and did indulge themselves in the same. Today older women especially those who are financially enabled have fallen prey to social drinking and many have ended up in the circles of addiction, sadly so. The Word of God commands older women not to be slaves to drink: not to be under the control, the influence of drink.
To teach what is good
Older women are to be teachers. They are to teach what is good. To be a good teacher you must know your teaching material well and be able to transfer the same to your student; to be an excellent teacher you know your teaching material, assimilate it and embody it them your students will follow your example. Older women must study and meditate on God’s Word, then they must obey and live out that Word. In doing so they will be teachers of what is good. They will teach with their words and their lives: they will teach young women how to be reverent in behavior and speech.
Teaching is a time, energy and life consuming endeavour. Teaching means a conscious and consistent pouring out of your life into another for the purpose of molding and training. Older women are called to give themselves into the molding and training of young women: To spend time, energy, resources and their life into young women.
So that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be self-controlled, chaste, good managers of the household, kind, being submissive to their husbands,
When all the three above happen it causes a positive ripple effect into every are of a young woman’s life. The young women are encouraged. They are encouraged to love, to have self control, to be chase, to be homemakers, to be kind, to be submissive to their husbands.
Picture such a society for a moment will you . . .
Where older women are living up to their full potential, walking in obedience to God’s Word, being reverent in behaviour and speech, dedicated to teaching what is good . . .
Where young women are learning from the odler women, young women are encoruaged to obey God’s Word, to love their husbands and chidlren, to be kind chaste and self controlled, to be homemakers and submissive to their husbands . . .
It is possible, it is achievable, it is doable.
In this age where young women are so discouraged to be home makers, to love their husband and children. . .
In this day and age where young women are throwing in the towel on chastity, kindness and self control. . .
In this day and age where young women are giving up on being submissive to their husbands . . .
We desperately need older women to provide an example of godliness, to teach and encourage the young women that godly living is possible. That chastity, self control and kindness are achievable. That loving your husband, your children and being a homemaker is a noble task to be daily striven after. That submission is not slavery but freedom to rest in obedience to God’s Word.
Older women, the ball is in our courts, the challenge is to us. Let us by God’s grace and through God’s enablement rise up to the occassion.
And when all is said and done guess who gets all the glory? GOD
So that the word of God may not be discredited
When older women obey God’s word and influence younger women to follow suit it is God’s Word/God’s Name that gets credit.
When older women walk in disobedience to God’s Word and influence younger women to follow suit it is God’s Word/God’s Name that gets discredited.
This is not new, the discrediting I mean.
We have all been in setups where men and women who are not Christians have discredited God’s Word and God’s Name in reference to the conduct of older women who profess the faith
. . . . . .
It is my prayer as an older/younger woman, and I pray for you older woman for you younger woman that I will study God’s Word and then obey that Word. Specifically as an older woman to be respectful in my behaviour and speech and to teach younger women what is good. As a young woman to be encouraged to love my husband and children, to be kind, to be chaste, to be self controlled, to be a home maker, to be submissive to my husband.
So help me God.