Titus 1:6 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Titus 1:6, NIV: "An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient."

Titus 1:6, ESV: "if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination."

Titus 1:6, KJV: "If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly."

Titus 1:6, NASB: "namely, if any man is beyond reproach, the husband of one wife, having children who believe, not accused of indecent behavior or rebellion."

Titus 1:6, NLT: "An elder must live a blameless life. He must be faithful to his wife, and his children must be believers who don't have a reputation for being wild or rebellious."

Titus 1:6, CSB: "An elder must be blameless: the husband of one wife, with faithful children who are not accused of wildness or rebellion."

What does Titus 1:6 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul commanded Titus to select elders for each house church on the island of Crete. Verses 6–9 list qualifications for Christian elders. This list is very similar to the one given in 1 Timothy 3:1–7. Verse 6 includes three major qualifications:

First, the individual must stand out for strong moral character.

Second, the elder was to be known as "the husband of one wife." The Greek phrase can literally be rendered as a "one woman man." Though this phrase has produced controversy, it simply includes two aspects. First, elders were male. Women would not have been accepted as leaders of a local house church, either in Jewish culture or among Gentile Christians on Crete. Though a man did not have to be married, an elder could only be male. The phrase implies a man known for faithful commitment to one wife. The requirement says nothing about past marriages, or divorce. The focus is on the person's current marital relationship.

Third, any children an elder has must not reject God. This is not the same as children who are young and don't yet have well-defined personal faith in Christ. Nor does it seem to include those old enough to live on their own, apart from their father's control. The elder's children were not to be known for partying, disobedience, or unbelief. These statements also imply that Paul's focus was on men whose children were older, rather than men with young children. In other words, very young men would probably not be appropriate choices for an elder.