Paul begins his letter to Titus by modeling what it takes to become a good disciple maker. In verses 1 through 4 of chapter 1, Paul illustrates for Titus and us that it all begins with commitment. The first commitment is to the mastery of Christ in our lives. We must place ourselves fully under Christ’s authority. Then we must commit ourselves fully to God’s Mission.  Jesus calls us to “Make Disciples.” That’s every believer’s true commission. It’s recorded in every one of the four Gospels as well as in the book of Acts. Committing ourselves together to this purpose gives life true meaning and eternal significance.

The first two verses give us the three focuses our mission must take. Paul calls himself a “servant” of God “for the sake of the faith of the elect.” This is “Evangelism.” Paul’s primary role as God’s servant is to bring those chosen to their full stature as believers in Jesus Christ. The mission always begins with evangelism. There are those who must hear God’s Good News about Jesus. Paul is God’s servant in this respect. We should be also. The second aspect is “Edification.” Paul is God’s servant, not only for the sake of the faith but also for the “knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness.” This speaks to me of building up the faith we profess through learning God’s word and growing in our understanding and then putting it in practice in our lives. Paul wants to lead others to faith in Jesus and then help them grow in that faith. Thirdly, it’s “Encouragement.” Paul is God’s servant for evangelism, edification “in the hope of eternal life.” Paul charges those with growing faith to live their lives with an eternal perspective.

Committing ourselves to a life of making disciples, evangelism, edification and encouragement is the path to living a meaningful life. Paul told another young disciple, Timothy, that he should “Command” his followers to live like this. He writes, “Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life” (1 Timothy 6:18-19).

“Go… and make disciples.” Matthew 28:19