Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible, by John Wesley, [1754-65], at sacred-texts.com
tit 1:1Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ - Titles suitable to the person of Paul, and the office he was assigning to Titus. According to the faith - The propagating of which is the proper business of an apostle. A servant of God - According to the faith of the elect. An apostle of Jesus Christ - According to the knowledge of the truth. We serve God according to the measure of our faith: we fulfil our public office according to the measure of our knowledge. The truth that is after godliness - Which in every point runs parallel with and supports the vital, spiritual worship of God; and, indeed, has no other end or scope. These two verses contain the sum of Christianity, which Titus was always to have in his eye. Of the elect of God - Of all real Christians
tit 1:2In hope of eternal life - The grand motive and encouragement of every apostle and every servant of God. Which God promised before the world began - To Christ, our Head.
tit 1:3And he hath in his own times - At sundry times; and his own times are fittest for his own work. What creature dares ask, "Why no sooner?" Manifested his word - Containing that promise, and the whole "truth which is after godliness." Through the preaching wherewith I am intrusted according to the commandment of God our Saviour - And who dares exercise this office on any less authority?
tit 1:4My own son - Begot in the same image of God, and repaying a paternal with a filial affection. The common faith - Common to me and all my spiritual children.
tit 1:5The things which are wanting - Which I had not time to settle myself. Ordain elders - Appoint the most faithful, zealous men to watch over the rest. Their character follows, Tit 1:6-9. These were the elders, or bishops, that Paul approved of; - men that had living faith, a pure conscience, a blameless life.
tit 1:6The husband of one wife - Surely the Holy Ghost, by repeating this so often, designed to leave the Romanists without excuse.
tit 1:7As the steward of God - To whom he intrusts immortal souls. Not selfwilled - Literally, pleasing himself; but all men "for their good to edification." Not passionate - But mild, yielding, tender.
tit 1:9As he hath been taught - Perhaps it might be more literally rendered, according to the teaching, or doctrine, of the apostles; alluding to Act 2:42.
tit 1:10They of the circumcision - The Jewish converts.
tit 1:11Stopped - The word properly means, to put a bit into the mouth of an unruly horse.
tit 1:12A prophet - So all poets were anciently called; but, besides, Diogenes Laertius says that Epimenides, the Cretan poet, foretold many things. Evil wild beasts - Fierce and savage.
tit 1:14Commandments of men - The Jewish or other teachers, whoever they were that turned from the truth.
tit 1:15To the pure - Those whose hearts are purified by faith this we allow. All things are pure - All kinds of meat; the Mosaic distinction between clean and unclean meats being now taken away. But to the defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure - The apostle joins defiled and unbelieving, to intimate that nothing can be clean without a true faith: for both the understanding and conscience, those leading powers of the soul, are polluted; consequently, so is the man and all he does.