Titus 1:12
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
One of themselves, a prophet of their own, said, "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."

King James Bible
One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.

Darby Bible Translation
One of themselves, a prophet of their own, has said, Cretans are always liars, evil wild beasts, lazy gluttons.

World English Bible
One of them, a prophet of their own, said, "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, and idle gluttons."

Young's Literal Translation
A certain one of them, a prophet of their own, said -- 'Cretans! always liars, evil beasts, lazy bellies!'

Titus 1:12 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

One of themselves - That is, one of the Cretans. The quotation here shows that Paul had his eye not only on the Jewish teachers there, but on the native Cretans. The meaning is, that, alike in reference to Jewish teachers and native-born Cretans, there was need of the utmost vigilance in the selection of persons for the ministry. They all had well-known traits of character, which made it proper that no one should be introduced into the ministry without extreme caution. It would seem, also, from the reasoning of Paul here, that the trait of character here referred to pertained not only to the native Cretans, but also to the character of the Jews residing there; for he evidently means that the caution should extend to all who dwelt on the island,

Even a prophet of their own - Or, a poet; for the word "prophet" - προφήτης prophētēs - like the Latin word "vates," was often applied to poets, because they were supposed to be inspired of the muses, or to write under the influence of inspiration. So Virgil, Ecl. ix. 32: Et me fecere poetam Pierides ...me quoque dicunt vatem pastores. Varro, Ling. Lat. vi. 3: Vates poetae dicti sunt. The term "prophet" was also given by the Greeks to one who was regarded as the interpreter of the gods, or who explained the obscure responses of the oracles. As such an interpreter - as one who thus saw future events, he was called a prophet; and as the poets claimed much of this kind of knowledge, the name was given to them. It was also given to one who was regarded as eminently endowed with wisdom, or who had that kind of sagacity by which the results of present conduct might be foreseen, as if he was under the influence of a kind of inspiration.

The word might have been applied to the person here referred to - Epimenides - in this latter sense, because he was eminently endowed with wisdom. He was one of the seven wise men of Greece. He was a contemporary of Solon, and was born at Phaestus, in the island of Crete, b.c. 659, and is said to have reached the age of 157 years. Many marvelous tales are told of him (see Anthon, Class. Dic) which are commonly supposed to be fabulous, and which are to be traced to the invention of the Cretans. The event in his life which is best known is, that he visited Athens, at the request of the inhabitants, to prepare the way by sacrifices for the introduction of the laws of Solon. He was supposed to have contact with the gods, and it was presumed that a special sacredness would attend the religious services in which he officiated. On this account, also, as well as because he was a poet, the name prophet may have been given him. Feuds and animosities prevailed at Athens, which it was supposed such a man might allay, and thus prepare them for the reception of the laws of Solon. The Athenians wished to reward him with wealth and public honors; but he refused to accept of any remuneration, and only demanded a branch of the sacred olive tree, and a decree of perpetual friendship between Athens and his native city. After his death, divine honors were paid to him by the Cretans. He wrote a poem on the Argonautic expedition, and other poems, which are now entirely lost. The quotation here is supposed to be made from a treatise on oracles and responses, which is also lost.

The Cretians are always liars - This character of the Cretans is abundantly sustained by the examples adduced by Wetstein. To be a Cretan, became synonymous with being a liar, in the same way as to be a Corinthian, became synonymous with living a licentious life; compare Introduction to 1 Corinthians, Section 1. Thus, the scholiast says, παροιμία ἐστι τὸ κρητίζειν ἐπὶ τοῦ ψεύδεσθαι paroimia esti to krētizein epi tou pseudesthai - "to act the Cretan, is a proverb for to lie." The particular reason why they had this character abroad, rather than other people, is unknown. Bishop Warburton supposes that they acquired it by claiming to have among them the tomb of Jupiter, and by maintaining that all the gods, like Jupiter, were only mortals who had been raised to divine honors. Thus the Greeks maintained that they always proclaimed a falsehood by asserting this opinion. But their reputation for falsehood seems to have arisen from some deeper cause than this, and to have pertained to their general moral character. They were only more eminent in what was common among the ancient pagan, and what is almost universal among the pagan now; compare the notes at Ephesians 4:25.

Evil beasts - In their character, beasts or brutes of a ferocious or malignant kind. This would imply that there was a great want of civilization, and that their want of refinement was accompanied with what commonly exists in that condition - the unrestrained indulgence of wild and ferocious passions. See examples of the same manner of speaking of barbarous and malicious men in Wetstein.

Slow bellies - Mere gormandizers. Two vices seem here to be attributed to them, which indeed commonly go together - gluttony and sloth. An industrious man will not be likely to be a gormandizer, and a gormandizer will not often be an industrious man. The mind of the poet, in this, seems to have conceived of them first as an indolent, worthless people; and then immediately to have recurred to the cause - that they were a race of gluttons, a people whose only concern was the stomach; compare Philippians 3:19. On the connection between gluttony and sloth, see the examples in Wetstein. Seldom have more undesirable, and, in some respects, incongruous qualities, been grouped together in describing any people. They were false to a proverb, which was, indeed, consistent enough with their being ferocious - though ferocious and wild nations are sometimes faithful to their word; but they were at the same time ferocious and lazy, fierce and gluttonous - qualities which are not often found together. In some respects, therefore, they surpassed the common depravity of human nature, and blended in themselves ignoble properties which, among the worst people, are usually found existing alone. To mingle apparently contradictory qualities of wickedness in the same individual or people, is the height of depravity; as to blend in the same mind apparently inconsistent traits of virtuous character, or those which exist commonly, in their highest perfection, only alone, is the highest virtue.

Titus 1:12 Parallel Commentaries

Library
Of the Name of God
Exod. iii. 13, 14.--"And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you." We are now about this question, What God is. But who can answer it? Or, if answered, who can understand it? It should astonish us in
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Whether Sacred Doctrine is a Matter of Argument?
Objection 1: It seems this doctrine is not a matter of argument. For Ambrose says (De Fide 1): "Put arguments aside where faith is sought." But in this doctrine, faith especially is sought: "But these things are written that you may believe" (Jn. 20:31). Therefore sacred doctrine is not a matter of argument. Objection 2: Further, if it is a matter of argument, the argument is either from authority or from reason. If it is from authority, it seems unbefitting its dignity, for the proof from authority
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether Sacred Doctrine Proceeds by Argument
Whether Sacred Doctrine Proceeds by Argument We proceed to the eighth article thus: 1. It seems that sacred doctrine does not proceed by argument. For Ambrose says: "where faith is sought, eschew arguments" (De Fid. Cath.), and it is especially faith that is sought in this doctrine. As it is said in John 20:31: "these are written, that ye might believe." It follows that sacred doctrine does not proceed by argument. 2. Again, if sacred doctrine proceeded by argument, it would argue either on the ground
Aquinas—Nature and Grace

Whether a Man May Make Oblations of Whatever He Lawfully Possesses?
Objection 1: It would seem that a man may not make oblations of whatever he lawfully possesses. According to human law [*Dig. xii, v, de Condict. ob. turp. vel iniust. caus. 4] "the whore's is a shameful trade in what she does but not in what she takes," and consequently what she takes she possesses lawfully. Yet it is not lawful for her to make an oblation with her gains, according to Dt. 23:18, "Thou shalt not offer the hire of a strumpet . . . in the house of the Lord thy God." Therefore it is
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Cross References
Acts 2:11
Cretans and Arabs-- we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God."

Acts 27:7
When we had sailed slowly for a good many days, and with difficulty had arrived off Cnidus, since the wind did not permit us to go farther, we sailed under the shelter of Crete, off Salmone;

Acts 27:12
Because the harbor was not suitable for wintering, the majority reached a decision to put out to sea from there, if somehow they could reach Phoenix, a harbor of Crete, facing southwest and northwest, and spend the winter there.

Acts 27:13
When a moderate south wind came up, supposing that they had attained their purpose, they weighed anchor and began sailing along Crete, close inshore.

Philippians 3:19
whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things.

Titus 1:5
For this reason I left you in Crete, that you would set in order what remains and appoint elders in every city as I directed you,

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