Paul had evangelized Crete early in his career. Later he had sent his trusted companion, Titus, to take charge of the church. While Paul endured his final imprisonment in Rome, he came to the realization that he was likely to be put to death. He set about making provisions for the future of the church without him. Thus he sent letters to at least two church leaders (Timothy was the other) laying out guidelines on how the church should be shepherded.
Paul draws upon his vast experience as an evangelist and an administrator. As in Timothy, he tells Titus that the future success of the church depends most upon careful selection and training of leaders and a righteous discipline practiced by all the faithful.
He goes into some detail regarding the duties of elders and bishops. He urges all Christians to lead an exemplary life. He specifically tells Titus to stress that individuals should give their time over to good deeds, "which are good and useful to everyone." He hopes the Christians in Titus' charge will "avoid stupid arguments". In his final instructions he asks Titus to make certain that Christians "spend their time doing good, in order to provide for real needs; they should not live useless lives."
In Paul's letter to Titus as well as his letters to Timothy we see the practical side of Paul. These letters are an excellent study for this reason alone, but are also important because of their pastoral nature. (They are meant to instruct on the running of the church.)
Paul's letter to Titus is an excellent short study on its own. In conjunction with a study of 1 and 2 Timothy it is an important extended study for those interested in Church governance or in a simple yet effective code for living daily life.
Timothy and Titus: A Life Application Bible Study is inexpensive and contains 13 lessons, charts, maps, study questions and notes. Visit our Life Application page for more information on how to use this work in a Bible study.
Timothy, Titus and Philemon, by William Barclay is great both as an in-depth study for a group and as a daily guide for individuals. Visit our page on Barclay for more information on how to use Barclay's works in a Bible study.