PHILIPPIANS‬ ‭2‬:‭25‬-‭30‬ ‭‬‬

“Meanwhile, I thought I should send Epaphroditus back to you. He is a true brother, co-worker, and fellow soldier. And he was your messenger to help me in my need. I am sending him because he has been longing to see you, and he was very distressed that you heard he was ill. And he certainly was ill; in fact, he almost died. But God had mercy on him—and also on me, so that I would not have one sorrow after another. So I am all the more anxious to send him back to you, for I know you will be glad to see him, and then I will not be so worried about you. Welcome him in the Lord’s love and with great joy, and give him the honor that people like him deserve. For he risked his life for the work of Christ, and he was at the point of death while doing for me what you couldn’t do from far away.”

Philippians‬ ‭2‬:‭25‬-‭30‬ ‭NLT‬‬

As we know, Paul sent Timothy to Philippi because he wanted his best confidant to be at work amongst them. Paul was locked up and in chains for his gospel ministry in the Roman territories. Yet, he also sends Epaphroditus. Though Paul’s relationship is significant, we should not discount the relationship with Epaphroditus and what it represents. Paul was sent Epaphroditus as a means of ministry. He was there to serve his needs and extend the hand of the Body of Christ back to Paul in this time of persecution. For Paul to release him and the Philippians of this burden came at no small task. There is a beautiful symmetry to the sled sacrificial nature of their relationship at play here. Just as Christ, for our sakes, rejected what was owed him, so did Paul in returning his friend to Philippi. In like manner, Epaphroditus uprooted his whole life to be in service to this gospel warrior. There must’ve been a deep and meaningful friendship as they parted ways. Though it may come at great cost, we must be looking for the opportunities to play out the beautiful mindset of Christ in our relationships. When done properly, they become reciprocal and edifying for all involved. Let us seek innovative and sacrificial ways to love each other.

Published by Josh McGary

MY NAME IS JOSH MCGARY. First, I am a Pastor of a small church in Portland, Oregon named Aletheia Bible Fellowship. We call it ABF. I have been a pastor there for the better part of 20 years. I am very eclectic. What I love, I love loudly and immersively. I have notable collections of toys, funko pops, and vinyl. I also infamously love pop culture, comic books, technology, the arts, psychology and philosophy.

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