Notes & Commentary:
Ver. 1. Sound doctrine. It is not sufficient to teach sound doctrine, says St. Jerome, if it be not at the same time taught in a manner worthy of itself; that is, if he who teaches it by his words belies it in his actions. (St. Jerome)
Ver. 2. Be sober.The Greek Fathers, Theodoret, and Theophylactus, translate the word, sober, attentive, or vigilant. But Latin interpreters understand it of sobriety, in the literal meaning of the word. Old men oftentimes under pretense of weakness, drink wine to excess. The ancients called wine the milk of old men; hence aquilœ senectus has passed into a proverb, to designate an old man who drinks much and eats little. (Calmet)
Ver. 3. In holy attire. See 1 Timothy ii. 9. The Greek word is sometimes used to signify the whole constitution, or state of a man’s health in all the parts of his body: here it is taken for a woman’s whole exterior carriage, her gait, gesture, looks, discourse, dress, that nothing appear but what is edifying. (Witham)
Ver. 4. Love their husbands. This is the first lesson he wishes to be given to young women; that they should always manifest a love, an attachment, respect and obedience to their husbands. But it must be a chaste love. Vult eas amare viros suos castè; vult inter virum et mulierem esse pudicam dilectionem. (St. Jerome)
Ver. 5. Discreet, chaste, sober. In the Greek is nothing for sober. The Latin interpreter seems to have added it, as another signification of one of the Greek words. See 1 Timothy iii. 2. (Witham)
Ver. 7. In gravity: to which is added in the Protestant translation sincerity, from some Greek copies; but it is left out by Dr. Wells, as being not in the best Greek manuscripts nor is it in the Amsterdam edition, (1711.) (Witham)
Ver. 9. Servants to be obedient. Servants owe respect and submission to their masters in every thing not contrary to the law, or the will of God. Hence they are strictly forbidden to murmur at their commands, to show any repugnance to obey them, or to censure their conduct. To avoid these evils, they ought to consider their masters as Jesus Christ himself, and their commands as those of God himself: which St. Paul often inculcates in other places in his epistles. (Ephesians vi. 5, 6.; Colossians iii. 23.) (St. Jerome)
Ver. 10. Not defrauding. St. Jerome puts, not stealing. The Greek signifies private thefts. Dr. Wells, not by filching. — That they may adorn (or give honour to) the doctrine of God, our Saviour, in all things; by whom we may understand God, i.e. Christ, God and Man, or God as common to the three divine persons. (Witham) — Thus ought they to shew forth in their whole conduct that strict love of justice and sanctity which the Catholic faith inspires into those who profess it, and live up to the admirable rules it prescribes; thus alone can they be said to do honour to their religion, when they practically perform what they speculatively believe.
Ver. 11. For the grace of God, our Saviour, hath appeared to all men. In the Greek: For the saving grace of God, &c. (Witham)
Ver. 12. We should live soberly, and justly, and piously. St. Jerome puts (as in other places for the same Greek word) chastely, justly, and piously. The words comprehend man’s duty to himself, to his neighbour, and towards God. (Witham)
Ver. 13. Waiting for the blessed hope; for the happiness of the blessed in heaven, promised and hoped for. — And coming of the glory of the great God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ. The title of great God, says Dr. Wells, is here referred to our Saviour Jesus Christ, by Clement of Alexandria in protreptico, chap. vi. He might have added, and by the general consent of the Greek and Latin Fathers. St. Chrysostom cries out: “where are now they who say that the Son is less than the Father?” St. Jerome in like manner: “where is the serpent Arius? where is the snake Eunomius?” And that this title of great God is here given to Jesus Christ, may be shewn from the text itself, especially in the Greek; for the glorious coming, and appearance, in other places of St. Paul, is always used to signify Christ’s coming to judge the world. Secondly, inasmuch as one and the same Greek article falls upon the great God, and our Saviour Christ; so that even M. Simon, in a note on these words, says the construction is, and the coming of Jesus Christ, the great God, our Saviour, and blames Erasmus and Grotius for pretending that this place is not a confutation of the Arians. (Witham)
Ver. 14. A people, particularly acceptable. St. Jerome translates an egregious or eminent people. He says in the Septuagint it corresponds to segula, which signifies a man’s proper possessions, which he has purchased or chosen for himself. Budeus says it signifies what is rare and uncommon; and it is well translated by the Protestants, a particular people. (Witham)
 Ver. 3. In habitu sancto, in katastemati ieroprepeis. Scapula, out of Dioscorus, says katastema is constitutio naturalis corporis. See St. Jerome p. 426.
 Ver. 7. In some Greek copies is added aphtharsian, sincerity
 Ver. 10. Non fraudantes, me nosphizomenous, non suffurantes.
 Ver. 12. Sobriè, justè, et piè. St. Jerome in his commentary, castè justè, et piè. So he generally translates sophron, sophronos, &c.
 Ver. 13. Adventum gloriæ magni Dei, et Salvatoris nostri Jesu Christi; epiphaneian tes doxes tou megalou Theou kai Soteros emon Iesou Christou. St. Chrysostom, (p. 401. lin. 43.) pou eisin oi tou Patros, elattona ton uion legontes. St. Jerome, “Ubi est serpens Arius? ubi est Eunomius coluber?” St. Paul uses epiphaneian for the coming of Christ to judgment. The same Greek article is put thus, tou megalou Theou, kai Soteros, and not kai tou Soteros.
 Ver. 14. Acceptabilem, periousion a perieimi. St. Jerome says, Egregium, præcipuum. See Deuteronomy vii. 6.; Exodus xix. 5.; Psalm cxxxiv. 4., Israel in possessionem sibi. See also St. Chrysostom, log. i. p. 402. linea 4tâ.
Bible Text & Cross-references:
How he is to instruct both old and young. The duty of servants. The Christian’s rule of life.
1 But speak thou the things that become sound doctrine:
2 That the aged men be sober, chaste, prudent, sound in faith, in love, in patience.
3 The aged women, in like manner, in holy attire, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teaching well:
4 That they may teach the young women prudence, to love their husbands, to love their children,
5 To be discreet, chaste, sober, having a care of the house, gentle, obedient to their husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
6 Young men in like manner exhort to be sober.
7 In all things shew thyself an example of good works, in doctrine, in integrity, in gravity,
8 A sound speech, unblameable: that he, who is on the contrary part, may be afraid, having no evil to say of us.
9 *Exhort servants to be obedient to their masters, in all things pleasing, not contradicting,
10 Not defrauding, but in all things shewing good fidelity: that they may adorn the doctrine of God, our Savior, in all things.
11 *For the grace of God, our Savior, hath appeared to all men,
12 Instructing us, that denying impiety, and worldly desires, we should live soberly, and justly, and piously in this world,
13 Waiting for the blessed hope, and coming of the glory of the great God, and our Savior Jesus Christ:
14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify for himself a people acceptable, pursuing good works.
15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
9: Ephesians vi. 5.; Colossians iii. 22.; 1 Peter ii. 18.
11: Titus iii. 4.