Titus was left on the island of Crete to do some corrective work there. Leadership had to be placed and bad doctrine replaced. Paul didn't hold back in describing some of the troublemakers.
"They claim to know God," he wrote to Titus, "but by their actions they deny him." (Titus 1:16)
Strong words. I have rushed by them too many times but they grabbed my ankle this time. James warned us that our actions reveal our faith and Paul makes it clear that words aren't enough.
These people of Crete claimed to know God. But their actions denied him. Their actions didn't simply reveal their faith; in this case, they denied God by what they did.
That's a major disconnect and one we need to take seriously. By looking at my actions, I can know where my allegiance lies. If it's not where I want it to be, I need some strategic adjustments.
For just as the body without the spirit is dead,
so faith without works is also dead.