Confraternity Bible: New Testament and Supplemental Commentary

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TITUS - Introduction

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Titus - Introduction

Supplemental Commentary:

[See Introduction to 1 Timothy.]

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OUTLINE

Introduction 1, 1-4

I. Pastoral Charge 1, 5-16

II. Charge to Teach the Christian Life 2, 1 -- 3, 11

Conclusion 3, 12-15


Confraternity Bible:

THE EPISTLE OF ST. PAUL THE APOSTLE TO TITUS

Introduction

St. Titus was born of Greek parents.  He accompanied Sts. Paul and Barnabas to the Council of Jerusalem.  He was uncircumcised, and although at the Council Judaizers insisted that he submit to this rite, St. Paul refused to permit it.  Titus is addressed in this Epistle as "beloved son," probably because he was converted to the faith by the Apostle.  He was sent by the latter on several important missions during the third missionary journey.  We lose sight of him after this, as he is not mentioned in the Epistles of the Captivity.  From this Epistle we learn that St. Paul entrusted him with the organization of the church in Crete.  Afterwards he was summoned by the Apostle to Nicopolis in Epirus, and during Paul's final Roman imprisonment he was sent on a mission to Dalmatia.  According to tradition he returned to Crete to exercise his episcopal office, and died there.

The journey of St. Paul to the island of Crete cannot be inserted anywhere in the life of the Apostle before the first Roman imprisonment.  Hence the visit, as well as the composition of this Epistle, took place between St. Paul's liberation from this first imprisonment and his death.  Catholic authors commonly hold that the Epistle was written shortly after the writing of 1 Timothy, in either 65 or 66 A.D.

The religious situation in Crete and the mission of Titus correspond to what confronted Timothy at Ephesus.  Because of the character of the inhabitants and the spread of erroneous doctrines, Titus' task was a difficult one.  Before leaving Titus at Crete St. Paul had instructed him how to organize and rule the churches.  In this Epistle the Apostle gives him counsels and instructions to guide him in his episcopal office.