Daily Devotional for 21 August 2020 – Titus 3v3 – what the Christian has been saved from

Titus 3:3

Today’s verse doesn’t make easy reading.  It begins, “For we ourselves were once…” and then gives a list of not very good things.

The context of this verse is our attitude to unbelievers (see Titus 3:1-2), which we will look at tomorrow, but it is worthwhile reflecting first on this verse concerning our own lives. It might seem that the list is quite harsh, but as I meditate upon it, I realise that this is what I have been saved from.  Such amazing grace!

  • I was “foolish.”  I was not understanding.  I didn’t understand God.  Although I had a moral code that came from my church upbringing, I thought I was a good person and that I didn’t need Jesus.
  • I was “disobedient.”  I went my own way, made my own rules.  I thought I could live how I wanted.
  • I was “led astray” by my own desires and by the ideas of the world around.  I had no anchor in God.
  • I was a “slave to various passions and pleasures.”  This doesn’t mean that every unbeliever is out of control, but that it was our desires and our need of pleasure/comfort/security that guided us and not the Holy Spirit.  For the Christian, the motivation is no longer self or pleasure, but Christ.
  • I had “malice” (that means wickedness, evil) in my heart, wishing evil on others, especially those who had hurt me (see below) and those that had things that I thought they didn’t deserve.  This is related to “envy”.  I got upset if other people succeeded more than me. John Stott describes these two attitudes as “very ugly twins.”1
  • I “hated”.  Not everyone, but there were people in my past who had hurt me.  But when Jesus saved me, that hatred was taken away – all by His grace – and relationships that had been full of hostility began to be changed.

What a list!  But what amazing grace! Totally amazing grace that saved a wretch like me.  I  once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see.

Spend some time today thinking about what Jesus has saved you from and lift your voice to praise Him.

1 John R. W. Stott, Guard the Truth: The Message of 1 Timothy & Titus, The Bible Speaks Today (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1996), 202.

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