Paul’s letter to the Philippians brings into focus some of the differing roles we serve in as God’s children.
We have seen how Epaphroditus was Paul’s sibling, fellow servant (co-worker) & fellow soldier.
All, & each, of these roles, responsibilities & relationships shapes us as individuals & as the body of Christ.
We are part of the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-14) & we live & serve as part of that body together.
Siblings, servants & saints making up the Body of Christ as saints of the Most High God. Hallelujah!!
A recap & some further reflections on siblings, servants & soldiers today.
I have thought it necessary to send to you our brother Epaphroditus, who has worked and fought by my side and who has served as your messenger in helping me. Phillippians 2:25 Good News Translation
The word for messenger here literally means ‘apostle’.
One that is sent with delegated authority & specific orders.
Epaphroditus has been sent by the Philippian church with a gift for Paul.
His orders are to help & support Paul in the work of the gospel.
This is the first sense of being a messenger for Epaphroditus.
At a deeper & more important level Epaphroditus is a messenger & apostle of Christ.
He is sent by Jesus to make Jesus known. Commissioned to disciple the nations (Mathhew 28:19-20).
Working alongside Paul to take the gospel to the gentiles. Sharing the burden & fighting the battles.
He excelled in this role & was deeply appreciated & greatly admired by Paul.
This comes across strongly in the commendation about Epaphroditus that Paul writes to the Philippians.
Like Paul & Epaphroditus you & I are messengers & apostles of the gospel too.
We are called to share this burden (world evangelism) & fight this battle (discipling the nations) together.
Sent with the authority & anointing of Christ to equip & empower us through His indwelling Spirit.
The power of the gospel is in its message, but we must be faithful messengers.
How will people hear unless they are told (Romans 10:14-15)? Here am I Lord, send me (Isaiah 6:8).
Jesus is the hope for the nations & we are the heralds. SELAH
- How am I fulfilling my call as a messenger of the gospel?
- Who has the Lord called me to work alongside in making the gospel known?
- Meditate upon what it means to be a messenger & apostle of the gospel.
A song related to this theme:
Thank you that You call & commission me as a messenger & apostle of the gospel,
Help me to faithfully fulfil that call upon my life.
Jesus thank you that You anoint & authorise me to move & act in Your Name,
Send me forth to make You known in the power & strength of Your Spirit.
Holy Spirit keep me faithfully making Jesus known,
Through my life & through my lips.
This I ask in Jesus mighty Name.
Written by Gareth Jones