Thursday, March 27, 2014

Romans 16:1-16

When Paul closes his letter to the Romans, he sends a greeting to all of the faithful servants of Christ that are there in Rome and the outlying area. Take a moment to read down through what Paul says about these people. “Phebe, as servant of the church, she hath been a succourer(helper) of many, and of myself also.” “Aquila and Priscilla, my helpers in Christ. Who have for my life laid down their own necks.” “Mary, who bestowed much labour on us.” “Urbane, our helper in Christ. “Stachys my beloved.” “Appeles, approved in Christ.” “Herodion, my kinsman.” “Tryphena and Tryphosa, who labor in the Lord.” “Persis, who labored much in the Lord.”
That is an incredible testimony, the apostle Paul lists these as “beloved,” and “helpers,” and “laborers.” Do you see a theme in the people who were part of the early church? It seems that they were a group of people who weren’t lazy and indifferent to the things and needs of others in the body of Christ. Rather it appears that they were actively pursuing the opportunity to serve those around them. They did this so much, that God recorded them in scripture as His very own helpers. Do you help the ministry of God? Ushering, babysitting, and singing in choir are necessary things, but I don’t think that is the only type of serving that Paul is talking about here. I think it is actively striving to daily understand and fulfill the needs of those in the body of Christ. It is finding the opportunity to help in a way that normally you wouldn’t want to, but because of a transforming work of Christ in your heart, you can’t help but desire to serve those around you for the furthering of the gospel and God’s kingdom.

Food for Thought: Read Romans 16:1-16. What are some of the words that Paul uses to describe the people he sends greetings to?