The Good Work

Thrice in Titus 3 (verses 1, 8, and 14), Paul talks about being ready for and doing “good work”. 

But what is good work?

From the context it seems clear that he isn’t talking about livelihood. Rather, Paul is talking about something else. He says in verse 8 that they are “excellent and profitable for people,” which seems to speak of human flourishing. Then in verse 14, Paul says that good works “help cases of urgent need” and are fruitful. 

And, perhaps what is more telling is, in verses 9-10 Paul lists what good work is not: foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, arguments about the law, and stirring up division. These things, he explicitly states, are unprofitable and worthless. 

At a glance, it feels like Paul is reminding Titus that we have limited time on Earth (and he may have had the imminence of Christ’s return weighing on his mind), and that we need to make the most of it. 

My question now is, what does this mean for leisure activities that have no apparent “fruitfulness”? For private hobbies like games or watching TV or movies? Should these things be put aside in favor of other endeavors?

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