But after that the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man appeared,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared.—Another thought now wells up in the Apostle’s mind. We of ourselves should never have become changed men, had not the kindness of God and His divine love for men shown itself. We, indeed, have no ground for self-exaltation, no excuse for haughty treatment of others, either in thought or action; for if we now live other and purer lives than they live, our change to better and higher things was owing to no desert or merit of ours, but solely to the mercy and the love of God. The changed life is here solely attributed to the manifestation to man of the kindness and love of God our Saviour. Here God our Saviour, as in 1Timothy 1:1, and in several other passages in the Pastoral Epistles, must be understood as “God the Father;” the “kindness” differs from the “love towards man.” The first signifies generally that divine, measureless, all comprehensive love which we know is the glorious attribute of God. The second expression tells of the special love which the Almighty has for man, and which has been so marvellously shown in the sacrifice and death of the Son of God for us. The two words—the measureless, divine love which embraces all creation, and the special love of God for man—taken together, make up the one idea expressed by the “grace that bringeth salvation,” of Titus 2:11 of this Epistle. In the rare word philanthropia, the “love of God toward man,” a quiet but very solemn reminder is given to those “Christians” who would have no dealings with their less pure heathen neighbours. The word applied here to God tells them to love men, even the enemies of their holy religion; they are to obey the heathen magistrate, and to think kindly of and to act courteously towards their heathen neighbour, because God has loved men—all men. Here are they to be imitators of the divine pity, copyists of the divine love.Titus 3:4-7. But after that the kindness — Χρηστοτης, the goodness, the benignity, και φιλανθρωπια, and philanthropy, love toward man, of God our Saviour, appeared — Επεφανη, was manifested, or shone forth, namely, through the preaching of the gospel. The Father is here called God our Saviour, as is evident from Titus 3:6, where the same person is said to have poured out the Holy Ghost on believers, through Jesus Christ our Saviour. Indeed, the title of our Saviour justly belongs to the Father, because he formed the scheme of our salvation, and sent his Son into the world to accomplish it; on which account the title of Saviour is given to the Son likewise. Not by works of righteousness which we have done — The best of which were so defective and polluted by sin while we were in our unregenerate state, that, instead of meriting acceptance, they needed forgiveness. But according to his mercy — His compassion for us in our state of sin and misery, and his free, unmerited love; he saved us — From our state of ignorance and guilt, of depravity, weakness, and misery. Observe, reader, the apostle does not say, he will save us, but, he hath saved us, true believers in Christ being already enlightened, justified, and made new creatures, and therefore in a great measure saved. See on Ephesians 2:8; 2 Timothy 1:9. By the washing of regeneration — That is, by regeneration itself, the thing signified, and not merely by baptismal water, the outward and visible sign; which regeneration cleanses the soul from the filth of sin, (as water washes the body,) implying the renewing influences of the Holy Ghost: see on Ezekiel 36:25; Ezekiel 36:27; Ephesians 5:26-27. Which he shed on us abundantly — Πλουσιως, richly, through our believing with our heart unto righteousness, on Jesus Christ our Saviour — In virtue of whose sacrifice and intercession it has been imparted to us, sinful and guilty children of men. That being justified — Acquitted from the guilt of sin, and accounted righteous; by his grace — His mere mercy, his unmerited favour, through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ; see on Romans 3:24-28; we should be made heirs — All who are justified being adopted into God’s family, born of God’s Spirit, and made his children, and therefore his heirs, Romans 8:17; according — Agreeably; to the hope of eternal life — With which we are inspired, and for which his promises, in and through Christ Jesus, made to all such, lay a firm foundation, 2 Timothy 1:1; Titus 1:2.
The kindness - χρηστότης chrēstotēs - "the goodness, or the benignity." The word is rendered "goodness" and "good" in Romans 2:4; Romans 3:12; Romans 11:22, thrice; "kindness," 2 Corinthians 6:6; Ephesians 2:7; Colossians 3:12; Titus 3:4; and "gentleness," Galatians 5:22. The act of redeeming us was one of great kindness, or goodness.
And love of God - Margin, "pity." The Greek word is φιλανθρωπία philanthrōpia - "philanthropy - the love of man." The plan of salvation was founded on love to man, and was the highest expression of that love; the notes at John 3:16. The Greek of this verse is, "When the kindness and love of God our Saviour to man was manifested, he saved us" Titus 3:5, to wit, from those sins of which we had before been guilty.
kindness—Greek, "goodness," "benignity," which manifests His grace.
love … toward man—teaching us to have such "love (benevolence) toward man" (Greek, "philanthropy"), "showing all meekness unto all men" (Tit 3:2), even as God had "toward man" (Tit 2:11); opposed to the "hateful and hating" characteristics of unrenewed men, whose wretchedness moved God's benevolent kindness.
of God our Saviour—Greek, "of our Saviour God," namely, the Father (Tit 1:3), who "saved us" (Tit 3:5) "through Jesus Christ our Saviour" (Tit 3:6).
appeared—Greek, "was made to appear"; was manifested.Kindness; crhstoths the word signifies one’s easiness to do good to another; that native goodness that is in God, rendering him inclinable to love, and prone to do good unto the sons of men. This was in God from eternity, but appeared in his sending Christ, and then his Spirit, and in the application of Christ’s redemption to particular souls.
the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared; unto them; and the Ethiopic version adds, "unto us". The apostle takes the advantage of the above character of himself, and others in their former state, to set off and magnify the grace of God in their conversion; so contraries, as black and white, illustrate each other. By "God our Saviour" is not meant the Lord Jesus Christ, though he is commonly designed by our Saviour, and is several times called God our Saviour in this epistle; see Titus 1:3 and who is truly God, and the only Saviour of lost sinners; and whose kindness and love towards them has appeared in many instances; as in his suretiship undertakings for them, in his assumption of their nature, and in his suffering and dying in their room and stead: and yet it appears from Titus 3:6 that God our Saviour here, is distinguished from Jesus Christ our Saviour there; and therefore here must be understood of God the Father; who contrived the scheme of salvation, appointed Christ to be his salvation, and made a covenant with him, in which it secured, and sent him in time to obtain it, and through his blood, righteousness, and sacrifice, saves all his people: it is his kindness and love to men that is here spoken of; and which designs not his general and providential goodness and kindness, which extends to the whole human nature, and to all the individuals of it; but his special love and grace shown in his kindness in Christ Jesus; that good will to men the angels sung of at Christ's incarnation; or that free favour and love of God towards elect men, which is sovereign and special, from everlasting to everlasting, unchangeable and unspeakable, which is better than life; the excellency of which cannot be expressed, and which has shown itself in various instances: it is said to have "appeared"; because it was hid from all eternity in the heart of God, in the thoughts of his heart, in his purposes, counsel, and covenant, and has been made manifest in time; particularly, it has broke forth and showed itself in the mission of Christ into this world, and in redemption and salvation by him; wherein God has manifested and commended his love, and shown forth the exceeding riches of his grace; and also in the effectual calling, which being a time of life, is a time of love, and is owing to the great love of God, and is a fruit and evidence of his everlasting and unchangeable love; and it is this instance and appearance of it, which is here meant, since it follows the account of the state and condition of the saints by nature; and is what was made to them when in this state, by which means they were brought out of it.But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Titus 3:4-6. Ὅτε δὲ ἡ χρηστότης καὶ ἡ φιλανθρωπία κ.τ.λ.] χρηστότης as a human quality; 2 Corinthians 6:6; Galatians 5:22; Colossians 3:12; used of God, Romans 2:4; Romans 11:22 (often in the LXX.); with special reference to God’s redemptive work in Christ, Ephesians 2:7.
φιλανθρωπία] elsewhere only in Acts 28:1 (2Ma 6:22; 2Ma 14:9) as a human quality. De Wette remarks on it: “unusual for the idea of χάρις.” The reason why Paul makes use of the word here is contained in Titus 3:2, where he exhorts to πρᾳΰτης πρὸς πάντας ἀνθρώπους. Χρηστότης corresponds in conception to πρᾳΰτης (both words stand closely connected in Galatians 5:22 and Colossians 3:12); and in allusion to πρὸς π. ἀνθρ., Paul adds φιλανθρωπία. The goodness and love of God to man, on which our salvation is based, should lead us to show benevolence and gentleness to all men. At the same time, the χρηστότης and φιλανθρωπία of God form a contrast with the conduct of men as it is described in Titus 3:3 in the words: ἐν κακίᾳ … μισοῦντες ἀλλήλους. Hofmann rightly remarks that as φιλανθρωπία has the article, it is made independent and emphatic by the side of the χρηστότης; it does not, however, follow from this that χρηστότης here denotes “the goodness, of God in general towards His creatures.”
ἐπεφάνη] just as in Titus 2:11.
τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶς Θεοῦ] see 1 Timothy 1:1.
Titus 3:5. The apodosis begins here and not at ἔλεος, so that the words οὐκ … ἔλεος modify ἔσωσεν; so more recent expositors, even Hofmann.
οὐκ ἐξ ἔργων τῶν ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ ἃ ἐποιήσαμεν ἡμεῖς] On ἐξ, comp. Romans 3:20. Matthies wrongly: “not from works appearing in the form of righteousness which we accomplished, i.e. not from our works produced with the appearance of righteousness.” Ἔργα τὰ ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ are rather: “works which are done in righteousness.” Ἐν denotes the condition of life in which the works are accomplished (de Wette, Wiesinger). Δικαιοσύνη here is not justification (van Oosterzee: justitia coram Deo), but righteousness, integrity; so, too, Hofmann.
ἃ ἐποιήσαμεν ἡμεῖς] ἡμεῖς is added emphatically; to make the contrast all the stronger (Wiesinger). Paul is not speaking of works which may have been done by us, but denies that we have done such works of righteousness. Bengel rightly: Negativa pertinet ad totum sermonem: non fueramus in justitia: non feceramus opera in justitia: non habebamus opera, per quae possemus salvari.1
The thought here expressed is not, as de Wette thinks, unsuitable to the context. In its negative form it rather serves to give emphasis to ἀλλὰ κατὰ (by means of) τὸ αὐτοῦ ἔλεος, and hence to the conception of the divine χρηστότης and φιλανθρωπία. Wiesinger: “The apostle even by the contrast of the οὐκ wishes to make it quite clearly understood that saving grace is quite free and undeserved.”
On κατὰ τὸ αὐτ. ἔλεος, comp. 1 Peter 1:3.
ἜΣΩΣΕΝ ἩΜᾶς] sc. ὁ Θεός. As ὍΤΕ … ἘΠΕΦΆΝΗ does not mean: “when or after it had appeared,” but: “when it appeared,” the saving is here represented as simultaneous with the appearance of the divine χρηστότης κ.τ.λ., although ΔΙΆ refers ἜΣΩΣΕΝ to its application to individuals, which is different in time from the ὍΤΕ Κ.Τ.Λ. above. But Paul could rightly put these two things together, because the goodness of God which appeared in Jesus Christ comes to perfection in the saving of individuals by the ΛΟΥΤΡῸΝ ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑς; the former is the efficient cause of the other.
ἩΜᾶς is not to be referred to all mankind, but to believers. The means by which the saving is effected are set forth in the words: ΔΙᾺ (ΤΟῦ) ΛΟΥΤΡΟῦ ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑς ΚΑῚ ἈΝΑΚΑΙΝΏΣΕΩς ΠΝΕΎΜΑΤΟς ἉΓΊΟΥ] The expression: ΤῸ ΛΟΥΤΡῸΝ ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑς, has been very arbitrarily interpreted by some expositors, some taking ΛΟΥΤΡῸΝ as a figurative name for the regeneratio itself, or for the predicatio evangelii, or for the Holy Spirit, or for the abundant imparting of the Spirit. From Ephesians 5:26 it is clear that it can mean nothing else than baptism; comp. too, Hebrews 10:23; 1 Corinthians 6:11; Acts 22:16.
ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑ] occurs also in Matthew 19:28, but in quite a different connection, viz. in reference to the renovation of things at Christ’s second coming; comp. however, 1 Peter 1:3; 1 Peter 1:23, ἈΝΑΓΕΝΝΆΩ, and John 3:3 ff., ΓΕΝΝΗΘῆΝΑΙ ἌΝΩΘΕΝ.
According to the context, Paul calls baptism the bath of the new birth, not meaning that it pledges us to the new birth (“to complete the process of moral purification, of expiation and sanctification,” Matthies), nor that it is a visible image of the new birth (de Wette), for neither in the one sense nor in the other could it be regarded as a means of saving (ἜΣΩΣΕΝ ἩΜᾶς ΔΙΆ). Paul uses that name for it as the bath by means of which God actually brings about the new birth. Comp. with this the apostle’s expressions elsewhere regarding baptism, especially Romans 6:3 ff., Galatians 3:27, Colossians 2:12, which all alike assign this real signification to baptism.
καὶ ἀνακαινώσεως πνεύματος ἁγίου] The genit. πν. ἁγ. is the genit. of the efficient cause: “the renewal wrought by the Holy Spirit” (de Wette, Wiesinger, van Oosterzee). This may be taken as the continuing influence of the Spirit working in the regenerated Christian, or as the single act of inward change by which the man became a καινὴ κτίσις (2 Corinthians 5:17), a τέκνον Θεοῦ. Here the word is to be taken in the latter signification, as is clear from its connection with ἔσωσεν ἡμᾶς; otherwise in Romans 12:2; Ephesians 4:22-24. According to some expositors, the genit. ἀνακαινώσεως is dependent on ΔΙΆ; Bengel: duae res commemorantur: lavacrum regenerationis, quae baptismi in Christum periphrasis et renovatio Spiritus sancti. According to others, it depends on ΛΟΝΤΡΟῦ, and is co-ordinate with ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑς; Vulgate: per lavacrum regenerationis et renovationis (de Wette, Wiesinger). The latter is the right view, for “what else could ἈΝΑΚΑΊΝΩΣΙς ΠΝ. ἉΓ. be than the new birth denoted by ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑ?” (Wiesinger). In this way ἈΝΑΚ. ΠΝ. ἉΓ. is added epexegetically to the previous conception ΠΑΛΙΓΓΕΝΕΣΊΑ, explaining it, but not adding any new force to it. Heinrichs quite wrongly thinks that ΠΝ. ἉΓ. here is the ΠΝ. hominis, ipsius, which (quatenus antea fuit ΨΥΧΙΚΌΝ, ΣΑΡΚΙΚΌΝ, ἘΠΊΓΕΙΟΝ) becomes holy by the ἈΝΑΚΑΊΝ.
Titus 3:6. ΟὟ ἘΞΈΧΕΕΝ ἘΦʼ ἩΜᾶς ΠΛΟΥΣΊΩς] ΟὟ is not dependent ΤΟῦ ΛΟΥΤΡΟῦ, but on ΠΝΕΎΜΑΤΟς ἉΓΊΟΥ. The genit. ΟὟ is in accordance with the common Greek usage. Heydenreich explains it wrongly by supposing ἘΞ or ἈΦʼ to have been omitted: “from which he abundantly, of which he poured out an abundant measure.”
ἘΞΈΧΕΕΝ ἘΦʼ ἩΜᾶς] an expression which has passed from the O. T. (Joel 3:1; Zechariah 12:10) into the N. T. It is used to describe the gift of the Holy Spirit; see Acts 2:17; Acts 2:33; Acts 10:45. The rich abundance of this gift is indicated by ΠΛΟΥΣΊΩς.
ἘΦʼ ἩΜᾶς] goes back to ἩΜᾶς in Titus 3:5Titus 3:4. χρηστότης καὶ φιλανθρωπία: (benignitas … humanitas) is a constant combination in Greek. See many examples supplied by Field. Here it expresses the notion of John 3:16, οὕτως γὰρ ἠγάπησεν ὁ θεὸς τὸν κόσμον κ.τ.λ. and of Ephesians 2:4-6. Perhaps also, as von Soden suggests, the kindness of God is here contrasted with the unkindness of men to each other; cf. Ephesians 4:31-32.
χρηστότης is a Pauline word, used of God also in reff. φιλανθρωπία is especially used of the beneficent feelings of divine beings towards men; more rarely of the relations between man and man, as in Acts 28:2. Diogenes Laert., quoted by Alf., distinguishes three kinds of φιλανθρ. (1) geniality of manner, (2) helpfulness, (3) sociability.
ἐπεφάνη: See note on 1 Timothy 6:14.
τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν θεοῦ: θεοῦ, as in Titus 1:3, Titus 2:10, is epexegetical of σωτῆρος.4. The contrast is striking; God hated the sinners’ sins, and the sinners hated one another, but God loved all the sinners through it all, and at the right time let His ‘loving kindness’ ‘appear.’ Render: When the kindness of our Saviour God and his love toward man appeared. ‘Kindness’ is the word in Ephesians 2, the passage of which the present seems a reminiscence; there its colleague is the Pauline ‘grace,’ Titus 2:5; Titus 2:7-8. The proper force of the word is well given N. T. Syn. § 63 ‘Wine is chrestos which has been mellowed with age, Luke 5:39; Christ’s yoke is chrestos, as having nothing harsh or galling about it, Matthew 11:30.’ Jerome’s definition from the Stoics is quoted, ‘Benignitas est virtus sponte ad benefaciendum exposita.’ Abp Trench adds: ‘This chrestotes was so predominantly the character of Christ’s ministry that it is nothing wonderful to learn from Tertullian (Apol. 3) how ‘Christus’ became ‘Chrestus,’ and ‘Christiani’ ‘Chrestiani, on the lips of the heathen—with the undertone, it is true, of contempt.’ In N.T. usage the word is peculiar to St Paul. ‘Love toward man’—our ‘philanthropy’—occurs Acts 28:2, and the adverb Acts 27:3, ‘shewed us no common kindness,’ ‘treated Paul kindly.’ But St Paul, as with many other words, elevates it to a higher height than that of man’s kindness to man, and ‘philanthropy’ is thenceforth even in its ordinary sphere transfigured with the brightness of the character of God. The best Christian should be the best philanthropist.
God our Saviour] As before, so frequently, of the Father; while below the same title is given to the Son, Titus 3:6; as in chap. Titus 2:10-11 followed by 13.Titus 3:4. Ἡ χρηστότης καὶ φιλανθρωπία, kindness and love to men) Human vices of a quite contrary character are enumerated, Titus 3:3.—σωτῆρος, our Saviour) The conjugate, ἔσωσεν, He saved, occurs Titus 3:5.Verse 4. - When for after that, A.V.; the kindness of God our Savior, and his love toward man for the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man, A.V. Kindness (χρηστότης), used by St. Paul only in the New Testament, and by him frequently in the sense of "kindness," whether of God (as Romans 2:4; Romans 11:22; Ephesians 2:7) or of man (as 2 Corinthians 6:6; Galatians 5:22; Colossians 3:12). In Romans 3:12, where it has the wider sense of "good" or "right," it is the phrase of the LXX., who use χρηστότης for the Hebrew טוב. In like manner, χρηστός is frequently used in the sense of "kind" (Luke 6:35; Romans 2:4; Colossians 3:12; 1 Peter 2:3). This is exactly analogous to the use of κακός and κακία, in the limited sense of "malicious," "malice" (see preceding note to ver. 3). Love toward man (φιλανθρωπία); only here and Acts 28:2 in the New Testament. It occurs repeatedly in the Books of the Maccabees, and is common in good classical Greek. God our Savior (see 1 Timothy 1:1; 1 Timothy 2:3; Titus 2:10, etc.). Appeared (Titus 2:11).
Love is too vague. It is love toward men; comp. Titus 3:2. Only here and Acts 28:2 : φιλανθρώπως kindly, Acts 27:3 (note). While it cannot be asserted that the heretical characteristics noted in the Pastoral Epistles point collectively to any specific form of error, it is true, nevertheless, that certain characteristics of the economy of grace are emphasized, which are directly opposed to Gnostic ideas. Thus the exhortation that supplications be made for all men, supported by the statement that God wills that all men should be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:1, 1 Timothy 2:4), is in the teeth of the Gnostic distinction between men of spirit and men of matter, and of the Gnostic principle that the knowledge (ἐπίγνωσις) of truth was only for a limited, intellectual class. To the same effect is the frequent recurrence of all, for all, in connection with the saving and enlightening gifts of God (1 Timothy 2:6; 1 Timothy 4:10; 1 Timothy 6:13; Titus 2:11). So here: not only has the saving grace of God appeared unto all (Titus 2:11), but it has revealed itself as kindness and love to man as man.
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