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Titus 3:2 Slander and fighting vs lenience

13-07-2023 - Posted by Hans

…to be calumniating no one, to be pacific, lenient, displaying all meekness toward all humanity.

Whereas in verse 1 it was about the relationship of believers to the principalities and authorities, in verse 2 it is clearly about the relationship to all people. A total of seven instructions.

Believers would not slander anyone. Our word “blasphemy” is derived from the Greek word Paul uses here. To slander is to speak ill, with the intent to damage someone’s name and reputation. Even if the evil spoken of were correct in itself, the intention is wrong. Spreading slander can sometimes be tempting. In Proverbs 18:8 we read that the words of the slanderer are like tidbits, they are gobbled up like sweet pie. Just think of the tabloid press that has turned slander into a revenue model. Slander breaks down and is therefore the opposite of love that builds up.

In line with this, Paul adds “to be pacific.” Slander and quarreling or fighting are expressions of aggression. Proverbs 16:28 says that a slanderer separates friends. In other words, where there is no slanderer, quarrel calms down (Proverbs 26:20). The positive counterpart of slander and fighting spirit is “leniency.” The person who is compliant accepts the people around him and knows how to comply. It shows peace in the heart.