Today Paul gets more specific on his command to Titus to teach what accords with sound doctrine (v.1) and speaks to the men under Titus’ charge.
Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness.
Titus was most likely younger than these older men, and it takes a great deal of humility to be pastored and led by someone younger in years than you. The fact that Paul needs to tell Titus how they ought to behave shows us that this kind of behaviour doesn’t always come naturally with age; if it did, there would be no need for Titus to teach them! (cf. v.1).
There is often a misconception that once an older man stops work, he is to move on to the next stage of his life and either become immersed in his hobbies or just simply live out his days quietly and without much fuss. But, here Titus is told to teach the Cretans that no, your older men are to be examples in character, they must enter this phase of their lives and not ‘let go‘, rather, they ought to be the living embodiment of one who has years of experience to share, tales of trials that have been overcome, and words of wisdom that come from walking with the Lord for so long.
Being sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness are all great qualities that we want the older men in our lives to be displaying. Titus is being told to teach the Cretans this, to have them set an example for those around them, and we would all do well to take stock of how we are measuring up, and who God has put in our lives to model this for us.
If you are in your 40s, 50s, 60s, or even older, look around and see who you can come alongside and mentor, who you can pass on some of these wonderful qualities and experiences to. If you are that younger man, receive this wisdom and mentoring with joy!