Titus was a Gentile who converted to Christianity. He completed his missionary work along side Paul, as one of Paul's assistants. The book of Titus is one of the shortest Pastoral Epistles. It is believed that Paul was the author of Titus; in this book Paul addressees how church leaders should act, it advises how Titus should teach the various groups, and finally the author gives Titus advice regarding Christian conduct. This paper will identify two biblical scholars' primary viewpoints on Titus 2: 11-15, beginning with Lewis Donelson's viewpoint and then Dean Thompson; it will then compare the two biblical scholars' reflections on the passage. The final paragraph will indicate whether or not I agree with either scholar's viewpoints and the reason (s) for my agreement or disagreement. According to Lewis Donelson, Associate Professor of New Testament at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, "We must learn good doctrine and teach it to others, so that we all can acquire the virtuous life
this human effort in and of itself will not be sufficient. As Christians have always insisted, it is really only God who can author the virtuous life. Thus the references to the power of God's grace in 2:11-14 are essential to the author's understanding of how all this works, for it is only through the divine powers that come in the gospel that new life, the life of virtue, is possible." (Donelson 175) Although Donelson suggests that the overall purpose of vv. 11-14 is to highlight Jesus as the reason to live virtuously and as the power source to accomplish such a difficult task, he really spends a significant amount of time discussing virtuous living. Donelson definitely takes the pressure off Christians themselves living virtuously by highlighting the gospel truths. I believe this is done so that the Christians would not focus on the act but the reasoning. Donelson says, "It is only the truths of the gospel that can produce virtue. (Donelson 176) Through...
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