Lucia's Blog: ADORNING THE DOCTRINE OF CHRIST
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

ADORNING THE DOCTRINE OF CHRIST

 “But as for you, speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine.  Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance.  Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior… teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.  Likewise urge the young men to be sensible; in all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, so that the opponent will be put to shame, having nothing bad to say about us.  Urge bondslaves to be subject to their own masters in everything, to be well-pleasing, not argumentative... but showing all good faith so that they will adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in every respect."
Titus 2:1-10


Some of the most beautiful prose written is found in Matthew 5-7.  It is the well-known Sermon on the Mount, the first doctrinal treatise taught by Jesus of Nazareth. Its doctrines have changed the world as it has changed the individual sinners who dared to put them into practice. They adorn the teachings of Him whom they adore.

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about how the world is constantly watching us, the children of Light. We seem to be under surveillance all the time. They are watching us!  For many, God’s doctrine is not attractive, especially to the unregenerate.  In fact, many find the Bible and its doctrines repulsive. Many claim that doctrine is not essential and that doctrine divides and that love unites.  What they don’t want to acknowledge is that true and sound Bible doctrine is the only thing that can bring the unity that God approves.  Our job as Christians is to adorn it, i.e., to show the beauty of the teachings of God.  God is always opening doors for us to show the beauty and value of following His doctrine. He has given His workers instructions that we may apply them and adorn His doctrine as we walk with Him.  It pleases Him.  Therefore, sound doctrine is essential to our salvation, and we are called to follow it.  We are to “speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine.”  (Titus 2:1).

Sadly, few read their Bible and meditate on the Word.  They are not able to defend sound doctrine and let their light shine making the gospel of Christ look more appealing!  Why?  Because we must live in such a way as to let others see the beauty of Christ living in us, (Galatians 2:20).  We must also sanctify Christ in our hearts that others may see the hope that is in us.  When they ask about our hope we should be ready to make a defense (give an answer), (1 Peter 3:15).  Only mature Christians (those who have grown in the doctrine of God, sound in faith) can do this.  It is in adorning the doctrine of God our Savior that the church can carry out His work and fulfill its purposes in everything to glorify Him.  It is grace that teaches us how to adorn the doctrine of our Savior, (Titus 2:10-11).  We must be compelled to adorn it!  (Titus 2:13). 

The word “adorn” means to decorate, to make beautiful, to embellish, to display the excellence of something, to exalt, to honor as well as grace.  In fact, the word “adorn” is similar to the word “cosmos,” which makes reference to the beautifully created order of the universe.  In Psalm 19:1, the Psalmist exclaims, “The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows his handiwork.” Not only is the universe functional and exact but it is beautiful.  Our God has adorned the universe majestically with its sunrises and sunsets, beautiful mountains and valleys and awe-inspiring panorama.  Indeed, by His mighty power, He spoke into existence order and complexity in our universe!  Our God is majestic and amazing!  

The opposite of “cosmos” and “adorn” is confusion and chaos.  Paul reminds us in I Cor. 14:33 that our “God is not the author of confusion (chaos) but peace.”  We have been exhorted to be “be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”  Therefore, we are to live, setting our lives in order so that we may adorn the doctrine of our Lord and Savior in all things.  It means that our lives ought to be a “letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all.”  The gospel can only be presented well by the way we live and serve our God.

When Paul wrote to Titus, he asked him to exhort all servants to be obedient to their masters, i.e., to please them, not talking back but “showing all good faith, so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior.”  It is the opposite of blaspheming the doctrine of God, I Timothy 6:1
“Let as many as are servants under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honor, that the name of God and the doctrine be not blasphemed.”
So, how can one, as a Christian, effectively adorn the doctrine of Christ our Savior?


I.   BY ALLOWING THE DOCTRINE OF CHRIST TO ADORN OUR “INNER MAN.” 
     (2 Cor. 4:14).

The imperishable adornment that is renewed according to the image of God is described in Galatians 5:22-23; Ephesians 4:24-32; and Colossians 3:10-12.  These words describe in detail the imperishable adornment of the inner man. Notice that all these Scriptures talk about putting on the new self.  They speak of the character traits or qualities (fruits of the Spirit) of someone created in the likeness of God, renewed and regenerated in the knowledge of God with all righteousness and holiness.  In Christ, we have all we need to be complete because “Christ is all, and in all.”  

Since we have all we need in Christ and our lives are hidden in both Him and the Father, we must put to death all lawlessness and set our minds on those things that are above where Jesus is.  Our job is to make sure that our “new self,” is well adorned and beautified so that we may make it look more appealing or attractive to a world that is living in darkness and sin.  We become a magnet that attracts others to imitate Christ as well, have what He has and be like Him.  There is no better way to present the glorious gospel of grace to the unsaved.  

As those who profess and have confessed to being followers of Jesus Christ, we must put on this attractive garment or “uniform” and adorn it well as those who “have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”  (Col. 3:10).  If we are not willing to put on the new garments of righteousness and holiness, imitating the character of Christ in us, showing others that Christ lives in us and that we now walk in His steps doing His will, how then can we teach others the gospel of grace and “convert” others to Christ?  Let this sink deep into your hearts!

The key to adorning the doctrine of Christ is righteous and holy living, being a good example “in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.”  (I Tim. 4:12).  In Titus 2, Paul is challenging older men, older women, young women, young men and bondservants to live in righteousness, in all integrity, respect, sound in speech, with purity in doctrine, “showing all good faith so that they will adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in every respect.”

Non-believers seldom read the Bible but are reading the lives of all Christians as open letters of recommendation every day.  Therefore, we as God’s chosen must “put on” the gospel of Christ in a way that is well presented (adorned) as possible without contradicting the message.  How is this possible? 
  • By “denying ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age.”  (Titus 2:12).  
  • By presenting our bodies as living sacrifices, and not being “conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”  (Romans 12:1-2). 
  • By being "crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me."  (Galatians 2:20).

So, it is vital that we repent if we have not been wearing the garments of righteousness and holiness. We must start removing the dirty garments, the sinful practices, and habits of the “old self,”dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”  (Romans 6:1-13).  Since “for as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”  (Gal. 3:27).

Consider the qualities and characteristics of this new “garment” or “uniform” worn by those who have been buried with Christ and raised to walk in “newness of life,” walking by the Spirit.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.  And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”  (Gal. 5:22-24).
  •  Love:  (Galatians 5:6, 13, 14; Rom. 13:10; I Cor. 13; Eph. 5:2; Col. 3:10-15).  Jesus said, 
“By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”  (John 13:35).
Again,
“And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.”  (Col. 3:14).
The apostles Paul, John and Peter, spoke of love as one of the greatest graces (I John 3:14; 4:8, 19; I Peter 4:8).
“Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.”  (I John 4:8).

Therefore, it is vital that we, Christians have genuine love for one another that we might “become partakers of the divine nature.”  (II Peter 1:4).

  •  Joy:   This joy has nothing to do with our external circumstances but is the product of our good relationship with God.  Joy is in the heart of the one who has learned the will of God and obeys it.  Consider what the apostle Paul wrote to the Philippians regarding this joy:
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.”  (Phil. 4:4).
So why should we have this joy as we walk in newness of life?  
  1. Because God has redeemed us from our sins.  
  2. Because we now have fellowship with God and with a new family, our faithful brethren. 
  3. Because we have the joy of being partakers of the riches of the glorious gospel of Christ, making it known to all.  
  4. Finally, because of the hope laid up for us in heaven.  
“May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.”  (Col. 1:11-12).
So, when one walks with joy, his life is filled with love, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  Moreover, with joy, we must add to our faith moral excellence, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. (2 Peter 1:5-7).  Therefore, “Rejoice always.”  (I Thess. 5:16).

  •  Peace:  Genuine followers of Christ have joy and peace.  Notice what Jesus told His disciples in:  
 John 14:27:  “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”
John 16:33:   “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”
Romans 2:10:  “but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.”
Romans 15:13:  “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Romans 5:1:  “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

It means that now God can accept us (since He has forgiven us) and we can maintain a good relationship with Him.  That is why the gospel is called the “good news of peace through Jesus Christ.” (Acts 10:36).  Those who preach and teach this gospel of peace are called “peacemakers.”  (Matt. 5:9).

  • Patience (long-suffering):  The word "makrothumia” is composed of  'long + temper; the quality of being 'long-tempered' … ' which is a quality of God.  It means patience, endurance, constancy, steadfastness, perseverance, forbearance, long-suffering, and slowness in avenging wrongs.  In Colossians 1:11 these words (patience and longsuffering) occur together or in the same context: “strengthened with all power, according to the might of his glory, unto all patience (hupomonen) and longsuffering (makrothumia) with joy.”

We find these two words also in 2 Corinthians 6:4, 6; 2 Timothy 3:10; James 5:10, 11.  According to Trench, N. T. Synonyms “hupomone” is the temper which does not easily succumb under suffering.  While “makrothumia” is the self-restraint which does not hastily retaliate when suffering a wrong. 

In Webster’s Dictionary, long-suffering means bearing injuries or provocation for a long time; patient; not easily provoked.  In the Bible, longsuffering means to have self-restraint when one is stirred to anger. A longsuffering person does not immediately retaliate or punish; rather, he has a “long fuse” and patiently forbears. Longsuffering is associated with mercy (I Peter 3:20) and hope (I Thessalonians 1:4). It does not surrender to circumstances or succumb to trial.  Those who are unjust or harsh (I Peter 2:18).  The Christian, who is longsuffering, will not tolerate sin and error (Romans 16:17; 1 Cor. 5) but encourages the fainthearted, helps the weak, and is patient with everyone. (I Thess. 5:14).  

Therefore,  
“Love is patient (longsuffering), love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”  (I Cor. 13:4-7).
  • Kindness:  To be in the likeness of God one must “put on… kindness.”    (Col. 3:12).  And “be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.” (Eph. 4:32).  Otherwise, we are in danger of losing our salvation.  I don’t deny how important it was for us to be baptized, that we come to worship and partake of the Lord’s Table and so on, but if we are not kind and merciful as God is, and if we do not forgive others, then our Father in heaven will not forgive us (Matt. 6:14-15).  Jesus told His disciples,
“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.”  (Luke 6:35).
  • Goodness:   This word occurs in just four passages:  Romans 15:14 (“full of goodness”); Eph. 5:9, (“for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth”); and II Thess. 1:11 (“fulfill all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power”). Some believe that goodness is the real manifestation of kindness.  Galatians 5:22 (“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness…”).
  • Faithfulness:   From the Greek pistis which also is translated as faith, belief, trust, confidence, fidelity, and faithfulness.  In Matthew 24:45 Jesus speaks of the faithful and wise servant.” Again in Matthew 25:21:  "Well done, good and faithful servant.  You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master."

Indeed, God requires that His stewards be faithful (I Cor. 4:2).  In the letter to the Galatians Paul declares that the Galatian brethren were no longer showing the same faithfulness and loyalty towards him and the pure gospel they had shown in the beginning (I Cor. 1:6-9; 4:13-17; 3:1 and 5:7).  Therefore,
  1. We must be faithful in the same way that God is faithful (I Cor. 1:9; 10:13; I Thess. 5:24; II Thess. 3:3; II Timothy 2:13).  
  2. We must be faithful like Christ is faithful (Rev. 1:5; 19:11; Heb. 2:17; 3:2,5).  
  3. Paul also speaks of his co-workers’ faithfulness:  Timothy (I Cor. 4:17); Tychicus (Eph. 6:21); Epaphras (Col. 1:7); Onesimus (Col. 4:9).  
  4. Peter said that Sylvanus was a “faithful brother” (I Peter 5:12).  
  5. John said to Gaius, “Beloved, you are acting faithfully in whatever you accomplish for the brethren, and especially when they are strangers; and they have testified to your love before the church.”  (III John 5-6). 
  6. Likewise, Paul admonishes the women to be “faithful in all things” (I Timothy 3:11).
  • Meekness or Gentleness:  Jesus said, “I am gentle and humble in heart” (Matt. 11:29; 21:5; 2 Cor. 10:1).  The Bible says that “Moses was very humble, more than any man who was on the face of the earth.”  (Number 12:3).  
  1. In our relationship to God, as children of Light, our meekness means submission (“receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls”).  
  2. In our relationship with men, our meekness is a sign of strength and gentleness.  It is the opposite of “fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions” (Galatians 5:20) as well as arrogance.

Notice what Paul says about exhorting the one who is caught in sin: “restore him in a spirit of gentleness (meekness)” (Gal. 6:1).  Those who don’t have the spirit of meekness or gentleness do more harm than good when they’re trying to restore someone.  They seem to ignore what 2 Timothy 2:24-25 says: 
“The Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth.”  
And also 1 Peter 3:15
“Always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.”  
Moreover, James 3:13 declares, 
“Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom.”
Did you know that meekness or gentleness is associated with love?  “What do you wish? Shall I come to you with a rod, or with love in a spirit of gentleness?”  (I Cor. 4:2).  And humbleness: “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart.”  (Matt. 11:29; Eph. 4:2; Col. 3:12).  Notice that in Titus 3:2, meekness is contrasted with being contentious: “to speak evil of no man, not to be contentious, to be gentle, showing all meekness toward all men.”  Let us let this sink into our hearts!

  • Self-Control (Temperance, KJV):   The Greek word egkrateria for self-control is found in Acts 24:25; Galatians 5:23; 2 Peter 1:6.  And according to I Cor. 9:25, “Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.”  In Titus 1:8 the elder (bishop) must be “self-controlled.”  In 2 Timothy 1:7 “God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”  Therefore, it is imperative that the elders, deacons, preachers (evangelists) and teachers have self-control.
  • Merciful:   (Matt. 5:7; 18:23-35; Luke 6:36; 18:13; James 2:13).
  • Forgiving one another:  In Matthew 6:14-15 Jesus says that we must forgive others that our heavenly Father might forgive us also.  So how does God forgive?  “For I will be merciful to their iniquities, And their sins will I remember no more”  (Heb. 8:12).  Many say “I can forgive, but I cannot forget.”  Do you think that such people forgive the way God forgives? Not at all!  When God forgives someone, the evil that He has forgiven remains forgiven as if it had never happened.  What a merciful and forgiving God we serve!
  • Humility (Humbleness):  Philippians 2:5-8 speaks of this kind of humility: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
  • Being thankful:  God’s children must be thankful to Him all the time (Col. 1:3, 12; 2:7; 3:17).  We must be thankful in prayer (Col. 4:2):  “giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father” (Eph. 5:20; Phil. 1:3; 12-21; Phil. 4): "singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God."  (Col. 3:16).


 II.   WE ADORN THE DOCTRINE OF CHRIST BY OUR GOOD WORKS AND OUR FAITH:  (Titus 2:1-10).

  • Teaching the “whole Truth and nothing but the Truth,” with the right spirit and attitude (2 Tim. 2:23-25).   Sadly, those who defend the Truth many times don’t present the doctrine of Christ in a good light.  Although “doctrinally sound,” many show an attitude of one who has “lost his first love,” therefore they need “to repent.” (Rev. 2:5).  It is essential that we understand clearly that we must not only “contend earnestly for the faith” (Jude 3) but that we defend the Truth in a manner that is not contentious.  Indeed, we must love the Truth with conviction (Proverbs 23:23), but we must teach it following the golden rule of love (I Cor. 13:4-8).  
  • In I Thess. 1:8 Paul says that “the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith toward God has gone forth, so that we have no need to say anything.”  The church must sound forth the gospel but do it with the attitude of the faithful bond-servant.  The bond-servant must be “well-pleasing, not argumentative… but showing all good faith”  (Titus 2:10).  It is then that the church adorns the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.  Christians ought to be prepared to defend the doctrine of Christ with meekness, yet boldly.
  • Today many religious teachers leave the impression that the Word of God cannot be understood and applied to faithful living.  They say that the doctrines of the Bible are contradictory and conflicting. My question is:  If that is true, then how can the Bible be the book of Truth?  They ignore what Jesus said, “Sanctify them in the truth: thy word is truth” (John 17:17).  If it appears not to be true, does the fault lie with the Word of God or with our teaching?  What do you think?  “May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, 'THAT YOU MAY BE JUSTIFIED IN YOUR WORDS, AND PREVAIL WHEN YOU ARE JUDGED."'  (Romans 3:4).  
  • Therefore, let the Word of God be true and man a liar.  “For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.”  (I Cor. 14:33).  Pay attention! God’s Word does not support division but demands unity on God's terms rather than unity in error. Unity is only possible when men give up their creeds, false doctrines, private interpretations, personal preferences and the “think so’s” written by men.  We must let the Bible speak for itself and nothing else.  Period!  It is only then that we can adorn the doctrine of God our Savior.  Are you willing to do it?
  • When we make our claim to follow the Truth and nothing but the Truth but then take away the clear teaching of the Bible, we are blaspheming the will of God before the world that is in darkness with our inconsistency.  Why?  Simply because we must teach all the counsel of God on issues of fornication, adultery, gossip, drunkenness, immodesty, submission to authority, divorce and remarriage, pornography, homosexuality, abortion, responsibility in the home (parents, children), racism and so on and at the same time we must show ourselves as good examples, the kind of people our God demands that we be.  Consistency with the will of God is what adorns His doctrine and nothing else.  It is then that the gospel will impact the world around us.  Our barrenness and leanness of soul will absolutely hinder our reaching out to them.  Take heed to the words of Jesus in John 7:38
“He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, from within him shall flow rivers of living water.”
  • So adorning the doctrine of Christ our Savior is the opposite of causing God’s Word to be blasphemed by our ungodly and worldly conduct (Titus 2:5; Romans 2:23-24).  When God’s people put into practice His moral principles, whether it be older men, older women, younger women, younger men, bond-servants, they adorn the doctrine of Christ.
  • Likewise, when we are ashamed of the doctrine of Christ, we do not adorn it because deep down in our hearts, we do not like it. We despise it.  In Mark 8:38 Jesus said, 
“For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of man also shall be ashamed of him, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”

Again in Romans 1:16 Paul said,
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
  • Our light must shine before ALL men if we are to adorn the doctrine.  Our lives must be lights that shine as good examples of good works before all men that they may glorify our God in heaven (Matt. 5:16).  
  • We must hold fast to the Word of God without complaining and protesting but rather shining our lights in this world of darkness.  Only then do we adorn the doctrine “so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.”  (Phil. 2:14-16).
  • We adorn the doctrine when we walk in love as “Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.”  (Eph. 5:25-27).
  • The doctrine is adorned by the righteous deeds of the saints.  “Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah!  For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns.  Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.”  (Rev. 19:8)

III.   THE WORD OF GOD TEACHES US THAT WHAT THE WORLD THINKS OF US IS CRITICAL:  

Consider the following Scriptures that urge us to behave in such a way as to cause them to honor God:
  • I Peter 2:11-12: “Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.  Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.”

Without a doubt, those in the world notice and ponder the good works of Christians and glorify our God in heaven.  They will be more open to the “Good News” that is preached to them by Christians. Think about this!
  • I Peter 3:14-16:  “But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.”
  • I Timothy 3:7 (requisites to be an elder):  “Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.”
  • Colossians 4:5-6:  “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. 6 Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”
Many Scriptures likewise teach us that what they world sees and thinks of us as Christians is vital for the success of the preaching of the glorious gospel of Christ, the gospel of grace.  Christians can influence the unbelievers to turn to Christ by their faithful service.

As those who have tasted of God’s goodness and grace we want the world to tell us, “I want to have what they have.” “I want to be like them.” “I want to be one of them.”  “I want to……”


CONCLUSION:

The only way that we are going to adorn the doctrine of Christ our Savior is by allowing His doctrine to adorn our spirit (our inner man).  Likewise, when we walk in a way worthy of our call, in our conduct and showing good works, we will adorn it as well.  There is no other way!

It is impossible to convert profane people to Christ if we are not walking in Truth and Spirit. That is, we must adorn the doctrine of Christ (the gospel) if we want them to listen to us.  It will be impossible to teach others the gospel of Christ if we ourselves are not imitators of Christ (I Cor. 11:1).

Hypocrites cannot adorn the doctrine of Christ. That is what we are if we do not put into practice what we preach or teach.  By the same token, if we are not sanctifying the Truth of God but rather finding fault with the Word of God, relying on our own creeds, doctrines, our own private interpretations, and reasoning, it will be impossible to adorn it.  And if we fail to let the Bible alone speak for itself, then we are blaspheming it instead of adorning it.

Moreover, if we minimize the doctrine of Christ, we become inconsistent and appear to blaspheme the will of God before outsiders.  Therefore, it is vital that we make Christ’s doctrine attractive to the unsaved.  Grace demands that we adorn it!  (Titus 2:12).  Let us then make it very attractive by our godly and holy lives.  Remember the time is short and the Lord is at hand!

When we as children of Light conform our lives to sound, healthy doctrine, we beautify the Word of God (His doctrine), making the gospel message more attractive to unbelievers.

So to adorn or beautify the Doctrine of God our Savior we must first believe it; engrave it in our hearts; study it with all diligence to present ourselves approved to God; obey it (being doers of the Word and not hearers only); defend it (we must be prepared to answer with meekness and boldness); live it (in integrity, respect, pure speech, etc.); and finally proclaim it:  “Let the redeemed of the LORD say so” and “With my lips have I declared all the judgments of thy mouth.”  (Psalm 107:2; 119:3).

May we adorn the doctrine of God our Savior so that we might be partakers of His divine nature. May we be transformed into the image of Christ.  May our deeds of righteousness adorn the doctrine to let the grace of God bring salvation to all men.  May we be good examples and handle the Truth rightly that we might adorn the doctrine.  May we let our light shine before all men that they may see our good works and glorify our Father in heaven.  And may we work out our salvation with fear and trembling proving ourselves blameless and above reproach as children of God who adorn His doctrine.


Luci

I'd like to leave with the words of a song entitled "Are you adorning the doctrine?"

Are you adorning the doctrine—
The glorious doctrine of God?
Walking so holy before Him,
Following where He hath trod?
So when the world looks upon you,
Nothing but Christ is in view?
So when the world looks upon you,
Nothing but Christ is in view? 

Are you adorning the doctrine,
And making attractive the way?
Honoring Christ by your actions,
And by the words that you say?
Are you, my brother and sister,
Proving the Bible is true?
Are you, my brother and sister,
Proving the Bible is true? 

Are you adorning the doctrine,
By meekness, and love, and goodwill?
Gentleness, patience, and trueness,
Liberty’s law to fulfill?
Jesus will shine if within you,
Showing these graces divine;
Jesus will shine if within you,
Showing these graces divine. 

If you’re adorning the doctrine,
Its beauties your soul will array;
Showers of grace will be given—
Strength from the Lord as your day.
Light from on high will be streaming
Over the pathway you tread;
Light from on high will be streaming
Over the pathway you tread.
-- Charles W. Naylor