Titus 1:1 Apostles

Thanks for visiting Bible Mountain. This is the 11th lesson in a series of lessons on the book of Titus. In this lesson we’ll look at Titus 1:1 and talk about apostles.

Watch the video or scroll down to read a transcript.


Hi. Thanks for visiting Bible Mountain. This is the 11th lesson in a series of lessons on the book of Titus. In this lesson I’m going to look at verse one and talk about apostleship. 

Let’s start by reading the first verse of Titus.

Titus 1:1  Paul, a slave of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of the elect of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to Godliness,

In the previous lesson I talked about how Paul identified himself as a slave of God. He did that because it’s true. That’s what we are as Christians. All of us Christians are slaves of God, and we have to live our lives accordingly. 

We also see in this verse that Paul identified himself as an apostle. In this lesson I’m going to talk about apostles. What is an apostle? What does this mean for you and me. 

Let’s start by defining the word. The Greek word that is translated apostle is the Greek word apostolos and it means a messenger or one sent on a mission. The word apostolos is a variation of the Greek word apostello. Apostello means to send or to send away.

In Titus 1:1 Paul identified himself as an apostle of Jesus Christ. Paul identified himself as a messenger of Jesus Christ, or one who had been sent on a mission by Jesus Christ.

Let’s go through the New Testament and look at some verses in which the word apostle was used to see who the apostles were, how they became apostles, and what were the requirements for being apostles. 

Let’s start in Luke 6:13.

Luke 6:13 And when day came, He called His disciples to Him and chose twelve of them, whom He also named as apostles:

As Jesus was traveling around, doing His ministry, He was followed by thousands of people. Many of them were called His disciples. A disciple is a student or a learner. There were many people who were following Jesus and learning from Him. Out of that large group of people, Jesus chose 12 to be His inner circle. He called them apostles. 

In Matthew 10 we have a list of the names of the apostles. Let’s start reading at verse two.

Matt. 10:2   Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; and James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed Him.

As Jesus did His ministry on earth, His inner circle was this group of 12. As you know, Judas betrayed Jesus at the end of Jesus’s ministry here on Earth. We see that in Matthew 26. Let’s start reading at verse 14.

Matt. 26:14   Then one of the twelve, named Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15 and said, “What are you willing to give me to betray Him to you?” And they weighed out thirty pieces of silver to him. 16 From then on he began looking for a good opportunity to betray Jesus.

Judas betrayed Jesus. Jesus was arrested and crucified. Matthew 27 tells us what Judas did next.

Matt. 27:3   Then when Judas, who had betrayed Him, saw that He had been condemned, he felt remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, 4 saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” But they said, “What is that to us? See to that yourself!” 5 And he threw the pieces of silver into the temple sanctuary and departed; and he went away and hanged himself. 

Jesus had an inner circle of 12 men, but after Judas committed suicide, there were only 11 of them left. 

After Jesus was crucified, He rose again, went back to heaven, and left the 11 apostles behind. As the apostles were waiting on what to do next, Peter spoke. Let’s read from Acts 1 starting at verse 15.

Acts 1:15   At this time Peter stood up in the midst of the brethren (a gathering of about one hundred and twenty persons was there together), and said, 16 “Brethren, the Scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit foretold by the mouth of David concerning Judas, who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus. 17 “For he was counted among us and received his share in this ministry.” 

Now let’s go down to verse 20.

Acts 1:20  “For it is written in the book of Psalms, 





21 “Therefore it is necessary that of the men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us — 22 beginning with the baptism of John until the day that He was taken up from us — one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection.” 23 So they put forward two men, Joseph called Barsabbas (who was also called Justus), and Matthias. 24 And they prayed and said, “You, Lord, who know the hearts of all men, show which one of these two You have chosen 25 to occupy this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.” 26 And they drew lots for them, and the lot fell to Matthias; and he was added to the eleven apostles.

Matthias was added to the 11 apostles so the inner circle was back up to 12 men. Notice the requirements for this 12th apostle. He had to be someone who accompanied them all through Jesus’ ministry, beginning with the baptism of John up until the the ascension of Jesus. Keep that in mind as we read some verses later in the New Testament that specifically talk about the requirements for being an apostle. 

Later in the book of Acts, we see there were a couple more men who were called apostles. Let’s read from Acts 14, starting in verse eight. This happened during Paul’s first missionary journey, the one he took with Barnabas.

Acts 14:8   At Lystra a man was sitting who had no strength in his feet, lame from his mother’s womb, who had never walked. 9 This man was listening to Paul as he spoke, who, when he had fixed his gaze on him and had seen that he had faith to be made well, 10 said with a loud voice, “Stand upright on your feet.” And he leaped up and began to walk. 11 When the crowds saw what Paul had done, they raised their voice, saying in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have become like men and have come down to us.” 12 And they began calling Barnabas, Zeus, and Paul, Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. 13 The priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates, and wanted to offer sacrifice with the crowds. 14 But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard of it, they tore their robes and rushed out into the crowd, crying out 15 and saying, “Men, why are you doing these things? We are also men of the same nature as you, and preach the gospel to you that you should turn from these vain things to a living God, 

Notice in verse 14 Barnabas and Paul were called apostles. At that point, there were at least 14 men who had been apostles. 

Now let’s go through some of the letters in the New Testament to see what else we can learn about apostles. Let’s start in 1 Corinthians 12, verse 28. Paul wrote this.

1Cor. 12:28 And God has appointed in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, various kinds of tongues. 29 All are not apostles, are they?

The answer to that last question is no, not everyone is an apostle. Now, let’s look at 2 Corinthians 12, verse 11. Paul also wrote this.

2Cor. 12:11   I have become foolish; you yourselves compelled me. Actually I should have been commended by you, for in no respect was I inferior to the most eminent apostles, even though I am a nobody. 12 The signs of a true apostle were performed among you with all perseverance, by signs and wonders and miracles.

Notice there were signs to identify a true apostle. Paul performed those signs and proved that he was an apostle. The signs were wonders and miracles. Not everyone was an apostle. Only a select few were apostles. The true apostles authenticated themselves by performing the signs of a true apostle.

Remember, the definition of an apostle is a messenger or one who has been sent on a mission. It matters whose message an apostle is delivering and who sent the apostle on a mission. Let’s look at some verses regarding that.

Let’s start with 1 Corinthians one verse one. This was Paul writing.

1Cor. 1:1    Paul, called as an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God,

Paul called himself an apostle of Jesus Christ. Paul was a messenger of Jesus. He was appointed a messenger of Jesus by the will of God. 

We see something similar in Galatians one verse one. This was also written by Paul.

Gal. 1:1    Paul, an apostle (not sent from men nor through the agency of man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised Him from the dead),

Jesus was the one who sent Paul as a messenger, not man. 

Let’s put all this together. Let’s go to Hebrews and read the first couple verses. 

Heb. 1:1    God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, 2 in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. 

The author of Hebrews started out saying God spoke long ago to the fathers through the prophets. That’s a reference to the Old Testament and the Old Testament time period. During that time, God spoke through prophets. The prophets were authenticated by performing miracles and predicting the future. The prophets gave messages which were the messages that God wanted delivered to humans.

Then Hebrews one tells us that in these last days, during the New Testament time period, God spoke through His Son Jesus. Jesus then spoke through His apostles. Just as the Old Testament prophets were authenticated by performing miracles or predicting the future, so too the New Testament apostles were authenticated by performing the signs of an apostle. 

Also, apostles were men who had seen the Lord Jesus on earth. They were witnesses of His ministry and His resurrection. 

Now let’s go back to Titus one and read again how Paul identified himself.

Titus 1:1  Paul, a slave of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of the elect of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to Godliness,

Paul identified himself as a slave. All Christians are slaves of God. Paul also identified himself as an apostle of Jesus. Not all Christians are apostles. Only a select few were apostles.

Why is this information about apostles important? It’s important because when Paul wrote the book of Titus, he wrote it as an apostle of Jesus Christ. He wrote it as a messenger of Jesus Christ. Therefore, the message that Paul wrote in Titus is a message from Jesus, which means it’s a message from God Himself.

The doctrine and the instructions in the book of Titus are words that come from God Himself. We need to treat them as the Words of God because they are the Words of God. We need to take them seriously, and follow them to the best of our ability.

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Scripture quotations from Titus taken from a translation by Bible Mountain.

“All other Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible®,
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973,
1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Used by permission.” (www.Lockman.org)

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