An Introduction to the Pastoral Epistles
June 8th, 1958 @ 10:50 AM
AN INTRODUCTION TO THE PASTORAL EPISTLES
Dr. W. A. Criswell
1 Timothy 1:1
6-8-58 10:50 a.m.
These are the eleven o’clock morning services of the First Baptist Church in Dallas. This is the pastor bringing that morning message. I had announced I had prepared for this hour a sermon in the first chapter of 1Timothy, the eleventh verse. But as I prepared the sermon for the morning hour at eleven and for this evening’s hour at seven-thirty, in preaching through the Bible for these more than thirteen years, I am coming to the end of the Scriptures. And in passing from 2 Thessalonians, which was our last message last Sunday night, and now, turning to these letters to Timothy and Titus, we are entering another world, altogether different. And the more I thought of it in preparing, in studying, the more I felt that at this juncture I ought to prepare and deliver a message of introduction to these pastoral epistles. For I repeat, from the last chapter of 2 Thessalonians, from which I spoke last Sunday night, to the first chapter of 1Timothy, there is a whole wide world in between. So, I have turned aside, and at this morning’s hour, I am delivering an introductory message to the three pastoral epistles—1Timothy, 2 Timothy, and Titus.
Now, there is a gulf between Thessalonians and Timothy, though they are right here together in the Bible: the first letters that Paul wrote were 1 and 2 Thessalonians; the last letters that Paul wrote are these pastoral epistles. His great life and ministry lie in between: these are the first—these are the last.
The content of all of Paul’s letters heretofore are far different than the content of the pastoral epistles. The pastoral epistles are—as their name would signify—they are addressed to these two young ministers. And their purpose is to instruct them how the church ought to be organized, how it ought to be conducted, how its services ought to be performed, what methods it should follow, the things it should do, and the doctrines to which it is to be true. These letters are written as Paul comes to the end of the way. All of these other letters heretofore have been written in the heat and in the fire of tremendous ecclesiastical emergencies and controversies. But these last epistles are final exhortations and instructions and doctrinal revelations. When we come to 2 Timothy, the last chapter, Paul is preparing himself for martyrdom and makes one last appeal, urgent, that Timothy, his young son in the ministry and in the faith, come to be with him [2 Timothy 4:9-10]. So, when we turn to these epistles, it is a different world. It’s like the concluding act in a great Shakespearean, Elizabethan drama.
Now, I thought to begin with, rather than just make a statement, I thought that we would review briefly the life of the apostle Paul because these pastoral epistles introduced us to a time in Paul’s life that heretofore has been unknown and not mentioned. When Luke wrote the Book of Acts, he closed with the twenty-eighth chapter: Paul, in his own hired house, a prisoner of the Roman emperor, guarded by the Praetorian guard in the imperial and capital city of Rome [Acts 28:16, 30-31]. I think the reason Luke quit there was that’s as far as the story had gone, and he wrote it up until the time of the contemporary present. But there is no possibility—you cannot fit the incidents referred to and described in the pastoral epistles—1 and 2 Timothy and Titus—you cannot fit the incidents referred to and the things described in the pastoral epistles, in the Book of Acts, and in the life of Paul, up to the end of the Book of Acts. Consequently, the pastoral epistles refer to a time in the life of the apostle beyond anything that you have read thus far in the Bible; beyond the Book of Acts, beyond the first Roman imprisonment, and beyond any of these letters through which we have just gone.
Now, let’s take a review of the life of Paul and see in what place these epistles fall. Paul was born about the year one. He was converted in about AD 35 [Acts 9:1-18]. He began his first missionary journey about 44 or 45 AD [Acts 13:1-14:28]. You see, as we go along with those dates, you know Paul’s age exactly: born in about one, converted when he was about thirty-five, begins his first missionary journey when he was about forty-four; his second missionary journey when he was about forty-nine or fifty, up through fifty-three [Acts 15:36-18:22]. He was arrested in Jerusalem in about 58 AD [Acts 21:27-36]. He was there in Caesarea three years [Acts 23:23-26:32], then taken to Rome [Acts 21:17-28:31]. And he was in the first Roman imprisonment from about 61 to 63 or 64 AD. And he was liberated almost certainly, he was liberated, he was set free by the Roman Caesar, by Nero, before the great Roman fire of July in 64.
Now, in those years of Paul’s freedom, beyond the first Roman imprisonment, beyond the Book of Acts, he possibly, doubtless did, make a journey to Spain. He certainly came back to the Eastern world; and he was in Ephesus; he was in Troas; he was in Miletus; he was in Macedonia; he was in Crete; he was in Nicopolis. All those places are mentioned, and incidents described, in these pastoral epistles.
Now, it seems that in about 67 that he was arrested in Nicopolis and taken to Rome for the last time; placed in the Mamertine prison, in which and from which, he wrote 2 Timothy [2 Timothy 1:16, 2:9, 4:13], and was beheaded on the Ostian Way by Nero just before 68, in June, when Nero died.
Now those last days when Paul was arrested were troublesome days, for Nero, whose reign began under such auspicious circumstances, turned into one of the most brutal and murderous tyrants this world has ever known. And the latter part of his reign was filled with revolution and turmoil: Gaul rebelled; Spain rebelled; and, in 66 AD, the Jewish nation rebelled—rebelled under Nero—which was ultimately destroyed in 70 AD by Vespasian and by Titus, both of whom became Roman emperors.
Nero’s reign ended in the terrible tragedies by which it was made possible. Agrippina, his mother, ingratiated herself in the affections of her uncle, who was Claudius Caesar, the Roman emperor, and became his wife. But Agrippina had no other motive than to exalt and advance her son, that he be emperor and she queen mother of the whole earth. So she poisoned Claudius Caesar, and that paved the way for her young son, Nero, to be emperor. But she miscalculated the boy because he brutally murdered his own mother, then began slaying and murdering right and left, until finally he plunged the whole empire in treachery and in blood. And in 64, in July, in the terrible conflagration of Rome, because of the response of bitterness in the hearts of the people of the city, why, he said the Christians did it. And from then on, you have the terrible and tragic story of Christians burned at the stake; Christians fed to the lions; Christians decimated, confiscated, persecuted simply because of their faith in Jesus—that began in Nero. But the conflagration spread all over the empire; and in Spain, they declared Galba emperor; and the General Galba came into Rome. The Roman senate passed a decree of death upon Nero, and when the horsemen came to drag him to execution, he was already in the throes and agonies of death by his own hand.
Well, those are the climactic times, and tragic. At the end of Paul’s life—I have just spoken that, concerning Nero—that you might see why it was that he [Paul] was arrested, and why it was he was put to death under the hands of that brutal and godless emperor.
Now, these pastoral epistles were written between the time of Paul’s first Roman imprisonment (at which time he was liberated) and the second Roman imprisonment (at which time he was slain). So they were written about 67 AD, from 66 to 67, up to the first part of 68 AD. Paul refers to himself, even in Philemon, when he was but sixty years of age—or fifty-nine, as: “Paul the aged” [Philemon 1:9]. That was because of the terrible price he had paid—in shipwreck, in stonings, in imprisonments, in dungeons [2 Corinthians 11:23-27]—for the faith of the Son of God.
Now, we’re going to speak just momentarily and briefly of these two men, Timothy and Titus, in order that as we enter the ministry of preaching through the epistles, you might be at home with them. The young men were very, very, very different—they were altogether different. You know, one of the marvelous and miraculous things to me as I hear preachers and see them is this: that they can differ so greatly, so vastly, so unbelievably, and yet they are preaching the same message and the same gospel. But they differ so much; their appearance, their personality, their demeanor, their study habits, their thoughts, their thinking, their preparation, their presentation, their delivery. Ah, they just seem to be in different worlds! Yet they love the same Lord, they preach the same gospel, and God blesses them!
Now, could I parenthesize here in saying I think every minister ought to be himself. Don’t ape or imitate or mimic some other man, no matter how wonderful or fine he is. You’ll be a poor imitation of another man, but brother, you’ll be the best example of yourself in this world! That’s true of me, especially.
Now, these two young men were very, very different. Now Timothy, Timothy was a retiring, sensitive young fellow. He had a tendency toward asceticism, against which Paul warns him. Timothy was the type of a young fellow who’d be buried in the books; he’d be out there in the library; he’d be meditating and studying; he would be most capable of responding to any kind of a situation. If the people were rejoicing, his cup would overflow. If they were weeping, he’d bow his head and weep with them. He was very sensitive in his spirit. And Paul was strangely drawn to Timothy. Timothy was with Paul longer than any other man. He worked with Paul almost all of his ministry. And, when Paul died: “Timothy, do thy diligence to come before winter” [2 Timothy 4:21]—wanted Timothy with him!
Titus—altogether different! Titus was a stern man. He was a tremendous man. Titus had a tremendous intellect and a tremendous personality. He was a born organizer and conductor of great enterprises. He could take the most difficult situation and do what Paul himself apparently couldn’t do. He could go into a controversy, where churches and people were torn apart, and by the majesty of his presence and by the strength of his intellectual leadership, he could bring them out into great solidarity and unanimity [2 Corinthians 7:6-7, 8:6, 16]. I say they were just altogether different. Now, Timothy, Timothy was converted in Paul’s first missionary journey in the town of Lystra [Acts 14:6]. There was no synagogue at Lystra; so that meant there were very few people there who knew the true God.
The Jews had a rule, a rabbinical rule—I do not know whether it’s followed today or not, but I think it is. Wherever there are ten heads of families, there they’re under obligation in that town and place to organize a synagogue. There was no synagogue at Lystra. Therefore, we know there were very few Jewish people there and very few worshipers of the true God. Consequently, this boy Timothy was taught by his mother and his grandmother the true faith of the living Lord. His father was a Greek, a full-blooded Greek. We know nothing about him. He’s never mentioned, except that he was a Greek [Acts 16:1]. But in this [second] letter to Timothy, Paul says: “I greatly desire to see thee, being mindful of thy tears” [2 Timothy 1:4]. Now that’s Timothy! Because of the arrest of Paul, and the difficultness of his incarceration, and his certain martyrdom, Timothy wept.
Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears…
When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee,
which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice…
and in thee also.
[2 Timothy 1:4-5]
So the boy grew up in a heathen community with a heathen father, but taught faithfully by Eunice and Lois—that T.E.L. class (Timothy, Eunice, and Lois). The boy did not remember the time when he did not know the majestic words and the flowing cadences of the psalmist and the prophet. All of his life he had been taught the Holy Scriptures of Jehovah. Like George Meridan said about his son: “My son may fall; but, in the darkness, he shall have the guiding light of a Christian memory.” Oh, how blessed and how fortunate the boy who is brought up knowing the Word of God, taught by Christian parents. So Timothy grew up in that home.
Now, on Paul’s first missionary journey, he was converted with his mother and his grandmother. All three of them, Timothy, Eunice and Lois, became Christians [2 Timothy 1:5]. The boy at that time must have been just about fifteen years of age; and he saw, he witnessed, the stoning of Paul at Lystra, when they dragged him out for dead [Acts 14:19]. For in this epistle, Paul calls to his mind the sufferings that befell him at Lystra, at Antioch, at Iconium—and at Lystra [2 Timothy 3:11]. You know, when I think about that—that young fellow who’d been won to the faith, watching them stone Paul to death and leave him outside the city, for a corpse to decay, or for vultures to eat, or for their kind hands to bury—you know, when I think of that, I also think when Paul himself was a young man, and he stood and saw them stone saintly Stephen to death [Acts 7:54-60]. He never got over it!
In the years of his afterlife, he said to God: “Lord, let me die in Jerusalem where I saw the ground drink up the blood of Thy martyr, Stephen” [Acts 21:13]. I don’t think Timothy ever got over it either. And I think that is one of the bonds that sealed those two men together—that tragic, tragic experience! [Acts 7:54-60]. Anyway, when Paul came back about seven years later on his second missionary journey, he visited Lystra again [Acts 16:1]. And the boy had grown up to be a young man, and he was greatly esteemed. The Scriptures say he was highly esteemed by the brethren [Acts 16:2]: everybody loved Timothy; everybody spoke well of Timothy. So Paul chose him to be his companion [Acts 16:3-4]. And he took the young fellow with him, and they had a beautiful solemn ordination service, the laying on of hands [1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 1:6]. And the young fellow, filled with the Holy Spirit of God, became attendant to and servant of the great apostle. Thereafter—there are spaces in Paul’s life where you never see him, never hear him referred to—but thereafter, for almost all of Paul’s life, Timothy and Paul are together.
You know, there’s something about that that appeals to your heart—an older man and a younger man, such devoted friends—brings back to you the memory of Moses and Joshua; you think of Elijah and Elisha; you think of Peter and John—and now these two, Paul and Timothy, the older man and the younger man—fast friends in a common love, and a common dedication, and a common determination to preach and exalt the glorious gospel of the Lord Jesus.
Now, may I speak of Titus? When Paul refers to somebody as being his children, he will say, “You may have many teachers but not many fathers, for I in the Holy Spirit begot you all” [1 Corinthians 4:15]—that is, he won them to Christ. Now, he refers to Titus as being, “mine own son after the common faith” [Titus 1:4]. So I know by that that Titus was also a convert of the apostle Paul. But, oh, unto what different conditions, and what a different line, and in what a different channel did the life of Titus flow. Titus appears at Antioch. When we meet him, he’s at Antioch. When we meet him, he’s at that beginning of Paul’s ministry, when Barnabas [Acts 15:2; Galatians 2:3]—because of the tremendous work at Antioch where we were first called Christians [Acts 11:26]—Barnabas went over to Tarsus, the capital of the Roman province of Cilicia, and got Saul (Paul) and brought him back [Acts 11:25-26]. And in that ministry of Paul preaching at Antioch, Titus was one of his converts [Titus 1:4].
Now, the next time you meet this young fellow, they are in a war. There came down brethren from Jerusalem to Antioch saying: “You cannot be saved by trusting Jesus. You have got to keep the law! You have got to observe the Sabbath day. You have got to observe clean and unclean in meats. You have got to be circumcised. You have got to obey all of the law of Moses, page and page of it. And if you do not, you cannot be saved!” [Acts 15:1]. Paul stood up and said: “That is not so! The glorious gospel of the Son of God has liberated us and freed us from the yoke and the slavery of the law. We are saved not by works of righteousness which we have done, but by grace and the mercy of God are we saved! And a man can be saved just by looking to Jesus, trusting in Jesus” [Acts 15:2]. and he pointed to Titus and said: “Look at him! There is a young heathen Greek who has been converted and saved. He’s not circumcised; and he’s not a Jew; and he’s not keeping the law, but he’s a great Christian!” [Galatians 2:1-4].
Well, they had such an altercation there at Antioch about it that it was determined they would take it to Jerusalem [Acts 15:2-4]. And there, in the fifteenth chapter of the Book of Acts, you have the great Jerusalem Conference [Acts 15:2-29]. And, in the second chapter of the Book of Galatians, Paul says: “And I took Titus with me” [Galatians 2:1]. That is, Titus was the epitome of what God can do with a heathen Greek! He wasn’t taught the Scriptures in his youth. He didn’t know anything about the true God. He was just a great big stalwart of a young fellow who had been gloriously saved! And so when Paul went up to Jerusalem to visit the Jerusalem Conference with Barnabas, to settle that issue of how a man can be saved, Paul says: “And I took Titus with me” [Galatians 2:1]. He was Exhibit A. He was God’s representative of what God can do with a man who will just look to Jesus and be saved, just trust in the Lord [Isaiah 45:22; John 3:14-17; Acts 16:30-31]. That’s Titus! I would think it took a whole lot of spiritual courage just for Titus to stand up, much less say anything or do anything. He was the bone of contention. Didn’t bother Titus—great big, fine, hefty, young fellow. He’d just stand there as an exhibit of what God is able to do in the mercy and grace of Christ, and thereafter—isn’t it a strange thing how these incidents at the first of a fellow’s life will pattern the whole course thereafter—thereafter, Titus was a living example of the doctrine of the grace of the Son of God! [Ephesians 2:8-9].
Now, this is one of the most peculiar and strange things in the Bible: Titus is never referred to in the Book of Acts; his name is never mentioned. Everything you know about Titus is in the epistles of Paul. For example, in the second Corinthian letter, Paul will call Titus’ name nine different times in that one letter [2 Corinthians 2:13, 7:6, 7:13, 7:14, 8:6, 8:16, 8:23, 12:18]. Yet he is never referred to in the Book of Acts. Now, why? Well, I’ll tell you why I think—and I haven’t time to explain why I think it—but I’ll tell you what I think. I think that Titus was Luke’s brother. I think Luke and Titus were brothers. I think Titus was a younger brother of the beloved physician. And I have great cause to think it because of the way Paul refers to those two men in his letters. Therefore, out of modesty, out of chaste sentiment, Luke never refers to that glorious young brother; never refers to him. But, oh, how he figured in the ministry of the apostle Paul.
All right, how did he figure? Well, this is it. Titus is Titus. On that third missionary journey, Paul stayed in Ephesus over three years [Acts 19:8-10, 20:31]. And while Paul is over there in Ephesus—on this side of the Aegean, capital city of the Roman province of Asia—while Paul is in Ephesus there, in the midst of a tremendous ministry, over here in Corinth, they were having the most… ah, it was a honest to goodness, down and out, out and out Baptist church! There weren’t “no” difficulties they weren’t having! They were just in it to their necks. Everybody was a-feuding, and a-fussing, and a-fighting with everybody else. They had chosen sides. I guess when they went to church, all of those that liked Apollos sat on that side, and all of those that liked Paul sat on that side, and all of those that liked Cephas (Simon Peter) sat there, and all of those that said: “…on all your houses; why, we’re over here just for Christ” [1 Corinthians 1:11-12]. Oh, it was a terrible place!
Now, in the midst of those tragic difficulties in the church at Corinth, the apostle Paul sent Timothy over there to straighten them out [1 Corinthians 4:17]. Well, can you imagine what happened when shy, ascetic, meditative, contemplative, sensitive Timothy went over there to do battle with that bunch of battle-axes and warriors in Corinth. Why, brother, they stepped on him; they pushed him around [1 Corinthians 16:10-11; 1 Timothy 4:12]. I don’t know what all they did to Timothy, but whatever they did, it riled Paul up beyond compare. Oh, he took it hard! He wrote them a letter that burned them up [1 Corinthians 5:9]; and we’ve lost the letter. Isn’t that a shame—lost it! Oh, I wish I had that letter! I wish I had that letter. We’ve lost it. He skinned them alive. Threatened to come over there with a rod himself [1 Corinthians 4:17-21]. Well anyway, when Timothy came back to Paul at Ephesus [1 Corinthians 16:11], that didn’t settle anything—nothing at all. It was tragic over there in Corinth, that great, wonderful church in that great mercantile city, and it was falling apart in divisiveness and dissention, in feuding, fussing, and fighting [1 Corinthians 1:11-12].
Well, when Timothy came back, what did Paul do? Now you know what he did: “Come here, Titus.” And Titus sat there, and Paul told him all of the things and what he was to do. And Paul wrote another letter, which is your 1 Corinthians. And he placed it in Titus’ hands and said: “Titus, I want you to go over there to that church in Corinth, and I want you to straighten out that church and to bring it back as it ought to be brought—a church of God” [2 Corinthians 8:6, 23]. Well, Titus left with 1 Corinthians, the letter, in his hand; and went over there to Corinth in the midst of those terrible troubles and difficulties in Corinth [1 Corinthians 1:11-12, 4:18, 5:1, 6:1]. All right, now, Paul is over here in Ephesus [1 Corinthians 16:8]. Now when Titus left, he made a rendezvous date to meet him in Troas. Titus was to come back from Corinth to Troas, and Paul was going to meet him at Troas from Ephesus and find out how Titus came out.
Well, bless your heart: while Titus was over there in Corinth, doing his best in that difficult church, why, Paul was here in Ephesus, and he had to leave Ephesus before he planned. Don’t you remember it? Those goldsmiths and silversmiths all got together and raised a great hullabaloo about “great is Artemis, great is Diana of the Ephesians!” [Acts 19:24-28]. And Paul had to leave [Acts 20:1]. So, when he went up there to Troas, Titus wasn’t there [2 Corinthians 2:12-13]. He hadn’t had time to complete his mission. And Paul says he was so restless and so full of care and concern about the church at Corinth that he couldn’t stay in Troas any longer [Acts 20:1-5]. So he crossed the Hellespont over into Macedonia [2 Corinthians 2:13]. And there in Macedonia, down in Philippi, he met Titus coming back from Corinth [2 Corinthians 7:6-7, 13-14]—with what kind of news? Glorious news! Titus had solved every problem; he had met every situation. And not only that, he had taken up a tremendous collection for the saints [2 Corinthians 7:13, 8:6]. Isn’t that a sight? Isn’t that something? That’s Titus for you! He not only knocked their heads together and got them all straightened out, but he fleeced them; he sheared them; he got a great collection [2 Corinthians 8:6].
Now, I want to show you something in the Bible: to me, the most beautiful passage of literature in this earth, of any language, of any generation, of any date or any time—the most beautiful literature in the world is 2 Corinthians, 1 through 7 [2 Corinthians 1:1-7:16]. There’s nothing like it for poetry, for majesty of prose, for elevation of thought, for eloquence and glory in this world. And how come Paul to write that? When he met Titus in Macedonia, coming back from Corinth [2 Corinthians 7:6-7, 13-14], Paul had such a glorious burst of praise to God that he sat down and wrote 2 Corinthians and sent Titus back to Corinth with 2 Corinthians. And he wrote that beautiful paean of praise and glory to God when Titus came back. And the problems were all settled and everything came out wonderfully, due to the glorious energy, and intellectual strength, and physical appearance, and dedication in life of this converted young Greek.
Oh, it’s twelve! How does it get to be twelve? And I had such a prepared conclusion to this sermon. Titus is with Paul the rest of the way. When Paul got out of prison, he preached through Crete, and he left Titus there to organize the churches in Crete [Titus 1:5]. And then, in the last letter, he has sent Titus to Dalmatia [2 Timothy 4:10], which is a rough, rugged country in which he was able to minister. And so we lose sight of him—and will see him and meet him some of these days in glory!
I greatly dislike closing like this, but I feel that I should. If I cannot encompass what I have to say in thirty-five to forty minutes, which is the time usually I have to preach, I just don’t deserve the opportunity to close a sermon as it ought to be closed. But it hurts me just the same not to do it. When I prepare these so earnestly and don’t get to preach them all, it hurts me. But I would finally get to where I’d be preaching two or three hours if I let myself, did you know that? So we just stop it, just stop it. And then there’s another thing: people aren’t converted because of the eloquence of the preacher. If they are, they’re not converted. People are converted because of the truth of the Book and the Spirit of God. And that’s our appeal. We’ve come now to a sacred and precious moment, somebody today who would stand up and say: “Today I give my heart to Christ to become a Christian, and here I am.” Or somebody to put his life in the church; or a family to come, as God would say the word and lead the way, would you stand by me? “Preacher, I give you my hand; I give my heart to God.” While we stand and while we sing.
INTRODUCTION TO THE PASTORAL EPISTLES
gulf between Thessalonians and Timothy
letters Paul wrote were 1, 2, Thessalonians; pastoral epistles are the last –
his life and ministry lie in between
of writing, content, purpose so different
Epistles addressed to ministers, to instruct them in proper methods of pastoral
Written as Paul comes to the end of the way
are final exhortations, instructions and doctrinal revelations
Written after the close of Acts
II. Review of Paul’s life
in Tarsus about 1 A.D.
about 35 A.D.
missionary journey about 44 or 45 A.D. and second about 50 A.D.
in Jerusalem about 58 A.D.
from Roman imprisonment around 63 or early 64 A.D.
Pastoral Epistles 65-67 A.D.
Martyred shortly before Nero’s death, June 68 A.D.
retiring, sensitive; with Paul longer than any other man
stern, tremendous, a born organizer
converted in Paul’s first missionary journey in Lystra
So few Jews there was no Jewish synagogue there
up in heathen community with heathen Greek father, but taught faithfully by his
mother and grandmother the true faith
An eyewitness to Paul’s stoning at Lystra(Acts
14:19, 2 Timothy 3:11, Acts 7:54-60)
esteemed by the church
Paul ordained him, chose him to be his companion (1
Timothy 4:14, 2 Timothy 1:6)
at Antioch(Titus 1:4, Acts 11:26)
conference (Acts 14:26 – 15:2)
A – Titus the epitome of what God can do with a heathen Greek(Galatians 2:1)
he is never referred to in Book of Acts
third missionary journey in Ephesus
Paul sent Timothy to Corinth to settle feuding, difficulties
When Timothy returned unsuccessful, Paul sent Titus (1 Corinthians 4:17-21, 2 Corinthians 8:6, 23)
Titus successful; met up with Paul to give good report (Acts 19:28, 20:1-5, 2 Corinthians 8:6)
Paul’s glorious burst of praise (2 Corinthians