In Titus 2, you see God's desire for younger women or all women. He outlines that real younger women are loving, virtuous, and submissive. The world might agree with the first but would argue vehemently against the next two.
God's Desire for Young Women
If you consider yourself a “young woman,” God wants you to focus on the inside, both yourself and your home. Using the thinking about how the Bible refers to young or old, you may consider yourself “young” if you decide not to teach other women. Of course, that is arbitrary, but it can be a helpful distinction if you are trying to decide. You likely know which category you are in based on what God states in this Titus 2 passage.
As a younger woman, you are hopefully developing internal values that will grow into consistently good actions. God provides the model to help this happen when He asks you to look at, listen to, and learn from older women with great values.
Develop your inside, your heart first with these three words or virtues in mind – Loving, Virtuous, and Submissive. As a young woman, typically, God asks you to focus those virtues on your home.
In Titus 2, you will find the Greek word used for the woman’s love for her husband is not the same as the Greek word used in Ephesians 5:25 for the husband’s love for the wife. The husband is to agapaō, to love as Christ loves His Bride, the Church. That love is unconditional, sacrificial, purifying, nourishing, cherishing, singular, and visionary. In Titus 2, the wife is asked to philos which means to love as a friend, associate, or companion. The word is combined with two different suffixes to tell who you are asked to love:
- philoandros means lover of husband and
- philoteknos means lover of children.
The difference between agapaō and philos fits perfectly with the different designs of men and women and how God asks each to use their designs. The man’s design for work and activities fits a powerful, working, and challenging love. God calls his testosterone to take on the challenge of an unconditional, sacrificing love that fits his role as leader – provider, protector, and preserver.
Your design and role, on the other hand, fit a friendship and companion love. You are designed to be a companion “helper comparable” or suitable for a man. This love fits your God-given role as helper, follower, and supporter. A man loves best through his Powerful design, the woman loves best through her Belonging or Relating design.
I think that is quite like our PERFECT Father God! He fits everything together, and it all works seamlessly and beautifully. But it does not work unless we pay attention to what He tells us to do.
The second trait of godly younger women is often ignored because there is so much influence from the world that says this makes no sense. God asks you as a young woman to be virtuous. It means being discreet, pure, and good.
Virtuous – Discreet / Sensible
Definitions for the word discreet:
- Greek – “Curbing one’s desires and impulses, sensible, in one’s senses, sound mind”
- English – “Good judgment in conduct, especially speech”
Both definitions imply discernment, discipline, clear thinking, prudence, and sense. You cannot do that without a foundation in God’s Word and consistently following the Spirit of God.
When you have discretion, you have right and careful thinking. When you are careless and impulsive in your thinking, the result is usually inappropriate words, actions, and relationship pain. Instead of impulsive thinking, God asks you to curb your impulses and desires, especially in your words, but also your actions.
Discretion does not slander or malign others – notice this link back to the “older” woman – “not slanderers.” Virtuous does not speculate on others’ actions, words, or emotions, and you do not pursue control (manipulate or dominate).
Virtuous – Pure
Again, the Greek and English definitions:
- Greek – pure from carnality, chaste, modest; pure from every fault, immaculate; clean
- English – unmixed, without dirt or stain, free from harshness or roughness, not polluted or weakened, no moral fault, chaste
What a powerful, impactful word! Pristine in its purpose and intent.
You are like the Bride of Christ, who is described to be “without spot or blemish.” What a great picture of “pure.” While this is your responsibility, it has a direct tie to the husband’s role to be helping you – God asks him to have a purifying love for you in Ephesians 5. The husband helps “purify” his wife with the Word of God, which implies that the process works when the wife accepts and applies the Word of God that is offered.
God specifically tells you here in Titus 2 that purity is what He asks and wants even if your husband is not doing what God asks him to do for you.
How about choosing purity as a description of you and your life?
Virtuous - Good
And again, two definitions:
- Greek – of good constitution or nature; pleasant, agreeable, joyful, happy; excellent, distinguished; upright, honorable
- English – of favorable character or tendency, suitable, agreeable, pleasant, virtuous, kind, benevolent
But, when you see the above definitions, it is like Dorcas in Acts 9:36, who “…was full of good works and charitable deeds…” And it goes far beyond words and deeds into attitudes – pleasant, agreeable, joyful, and even excellent, which are typically the more difficult areas for anyone.
It might be helpful to state what “good” is not – not sullen, bitter, troublesome, quarrelsome, worrying, or fretting. Does that help?
But when you operate out of your “good” values, choosing to be good, not being controlled by life, circumstances, and people, you are living as God wants, so good shows up. You find you can be pleasant, agreeable, and joyful anyway!
Recognizing you have a choice to trust God or not is the first step toward good. This is true of all your values. Not seeing a choice drives reacting and responding, which most often results in selfishness, not godliness.
If there is any word that will generate an emotional response from most women, it would be – submission. It is critical for both men and women, so a full course (09A - The "S" Word - Submission) is devoted to it. Here in Titus 2, the Apostle Paul tells you that submission is a key element to being a REAL woman when he talks about being a homemaker and being subject to your own husband.
God wants you to be a homemaker because it fits with His desire for godly parents to raise “…godly offspring…” (Malachi 2:15) so that the children have a foundation to choose to become godly adults. God wants a father and mother to “Train up a child in the way he should go…” (Proverbs 32:6), and that requires time from parents.
That is a fundamental question or issue for all your life. For you, God lists “homemaker,” so are you? Yes, God wants godly offspring, but He wants you to simply obey Him and do what He asks. And He never asks us to do something that He will not energize us to do or, more importantly, He never asks us to do something that is not for our BEST.
Please do not let this be what God says about you.
So, they come to you as people do, they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them, for with their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain – Ezekiel 33:31
What are you busy with? Are you busy at home or busy with maintaining a lifestyle?
Some women use the example of the Proverbs 31 wife to justify their career or work outside the home. If you want a great study, look at all that she did. Even the buying and selling of a field was a secondary element to the primary element of benefiting the home. A summary of the Proverbs 31 woman is at the end of this chapter.
Subject to Your Own Husband
Submission tends to be placed at the same level as a curse word, so you may not understand what a benefit this word is to both men and women. (Submission is covered in depth in course 09A - The ‘S’ Word – Submission). Please look at that course to understand that submission is something that is voluntary, it cannot be forced.
Submission is part of the order for life that God has set up, and it applies to God the Father and God the Son.
But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God – 1 Corinthians 11:3
As to the Lord
…submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. – Ephesians 5:22
But shouldn’t you only submit to God? If God wanted the submission only to Him, He would have stated it that way. Submission here is to your own husband, but that submission should be the same as you would give the Lord Himself. Submission is to God primarily, but it is through your husband. Submitting to God is your primary choice, and submitting to your husband is a secondary choice you make as a step to get there.
Submission will be easier if you respect the person. In Ephesians 5, when Paul talks to the husband and wife, for the husband, he starts with “love” (5:25) and ends with “love” (5:33).
For the wife, he starts with “submit” (5:22) but ends with “respect”:
…see that she respects her husband… – Ephesians 5:33b
When you give your husband respect, you take a step away from your judgment. That, in turn, is a help to your husband to not live in his judgment. You decide to submit rather than control, which allows you to stay in your relational design. And you are also connecting with the design or nature side of man, relating to him in the way he best understands. Men are designed to work, lead, and desire significance, so when a woman respects a man, it relates directly to his design.
Of course, most importantly, you are trusting and obeying God.
Scripture gives no conditions or exceptions to “submit” or “respect.” There is no time or circumstance when God asks you not to respect your husband. Apparently, even if your husband is not respectable. As Yoda would say, “Respect him, you must!”
In the NIV it states that a woman “must respect.” Please wrestle with the difference between “have to” and “want to.” (More on this in course 08B - Freedom and Choice Is An Amazing Lifestyle).