The Apostle Paul placed a man named Titus on the small island of Crete in order to instruct the people there to live lives of faith in Jesus Christ. Soon after this, he wrote to Titus to remind the Cretans about the grace of God. Paul wrote:
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. (Titus 2:11-14)
This morning we shall be reminded about the grace of God and how it is revealed, it saves, it trains, and it prepares.
The Grace of God is Revealed
Before we discuss the grace of God we need to understand what Bible means by grace. Grace is receiving something you did not earn. It is understood in the context of our verses as the gift of salvation that is received even though it is not earned.
How is the grace of God revealed? It is revealed through Jesus Christ. God, the Father, said, “This is my Son, my Chosen One; listen to Him” (Luke 9:35). Peter, when he was before the religious rulers, said: “there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). This brings us to our next point…
The Grace of God Saves
The grace of God that has appeared brings salvation. What does it save us from? According to Romans 1:18; it saves us from the wrath of God. God’s wrath is against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. Ungodliness is the sin of refusing to honor God. Therefore, if you refuse to honor God you are in rebellion and God’s wrath is against you. But God graciously extends grace that saves us from His wrath. This salvation is by grace and is not earned: it is offered freely. It is for all people because it is the only means of salvation offered. God’s salvation brings us peace with God (Rom 5:1) through our surrender to Jesus Christ.
The Grace of God Trains
The grace of God that has appeared not only saves us but trains us. God’s grace, once received, trains us to renounce the ungodliness of this world that brings His wrath. God’s grace transforms its recipient and trains them to love God and to love what God loves. This grace causes its recipient to renounce the “fleeting pleasures of sin” (Heb 11:25).
This saving grace also trains us to renounce worldly passions. Passions, in and of themselves, are not evil; but any passion that draws you from Christ must be renounced. The grace of God trains us to be self-controlled, upright, and godly. We are not only told what not to do, but what we should be doing. It is important to remember that this is not optional training for those who want extra credit; but is the mandatory training all Christians receive.
The Grace of God Prepares
The grace of God that has appeared not only saves us and trains us but also prepares us. We are being trained in this present age for the next age. We work in this world for the next world. Our text says that we are waiting for something (or should I say someone). We are waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.
We are prepared for His coming because He has redeemed and purified us. Jesus did not just save us and then left us alone. He redeemed us from lawlessness and purified us to be His people. Those who are saved are trained and those who are trained are purified. This entire process prepares us for His return and causes us to be zealous in our good works that He calls us to do.
Before we come to a close we must ask ourselves some questions. Have we received this grace of God that brings salvation? Are we recipients of this grace that saves us from God’s wrath? The Bible tells us that you can receive God’s grace and you can know that you have received God’s grace.
Are we being trained to renounce ungodliness and unrighteousness? Remember, the grace that saves is the grace that trains. Therefore if you are not being trained by the grace of God, you are not being saved by the grace of God. Do you have evidence of fighting against ungodliness or enjoying ungodliness?
Are you prepared for the return of Christ? Are you zealous to do the good works Jesus has called you to do? These are important questions we must ask ourselves.