As we continue to talk about the meaning of the word minister, as taught by Jesus, I would like to remind us that it is all about the ATTITUDE of servant hood. Let us examine the roles of selected ministers in Paul’s ministry. Paul was always careful to mentor and prepare ministers who were easily able to take his place at any time and carry out his job with the same degree of effectiveness. When we read between the lines, we would see that he had great confidence in them, treated them with great respect and encouraged the brethren to do the same. Some of the ministers on his team included Titus, Timothy, Tychicus, Epaphras, Demas, Luke and others. Today I would like to talk about Epaphras, Tychicus, Timothy and Titus.

Epaphras

He was mentioned three times in Paul’s letters. Paul used the following adjectives were used to describe him – fellowservant, faithful minister (Col 1: 7), servant of Christ (Col 4: 12) and Paul’s fellow prisoner (Philomen 1: 23). Here are some of his ministerial activities that emerged in the writings about him:

* He worked among the Colossian believers and reported on their progress to Paul. His report on their progress brought much joy to General Bishop Paul(Col 1: 1-7).

* He interceded for the believers at Colosse, Laodicea and Hierapolis, praying that they would “stand perfect and complete in all the will of God” (Col 4: 12). Paul testified that he was zealous for the spiritual maturity and preservation of these believers.

Tychicus

* Paul described him as a beloved brother, faithful minister in the Lord (Eph 6: 21; Col 4: 7).

* He also played an important role in Paul’s ministry as follows:

a. accompanied him on missionary trips (Acts 20: 4)

b. wrote letters for Paul (Eph 6: 24, Col 4: 18)

c. he visited the Ephesians in the role of an Elder, reporting on Paul’s condition to the believers at Ephesus, thus comforting them and relieving them of their concern about him (Eph 6: 21-22, 2 Tim 4: 12)

c. he also reported to the Colossians about Paul’s condition and also acted in the role of ambassador, returning Onesimus to his master Philomen on Paul’s behalf(Col 4: 7-9, Philomen 1).

COMMENTS

As I conclude today, the ministers/deacons in Paul’s ministry were truly servants of the Lord. They carried the same love and concern for the ministry that Paul held, interceding for the believers, strengthening them in the faith, comforting their hearts. They were important liaisons between Paul and the brethren and carried out their roles with a sense of great responsibility.

The roles of the ministers/deacons in today’s church may be more diverse, but the minister is basically a fellow laborer with the Lord and with the leader to whom God has assigned them. I hope that today’s blog will strengthen and encourage your hearts. Blessings and more next time!

//

Advertisements