PAUL'S EXAMPLES OF FAITHFUL CHRISTIAN SOLDIERS
Today our lesson aim is to encourage you to become a strong and faithful soldier of the Lord. This passage presents two Christian soldiers who were faithful to the Lord. They are a dynamic example for every person who is a member of the Lord's Army.
1. There was the Christian soldier Tychicus - vs. 21-22. "But that ye also may know my affairs, and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things: Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts."
Paul shares three significant things about this great soldier of Christ.
Tychicus was a beloved brother, a man who had believed in Jesus Christ and demonstrated it by loving others deeply. He treated others as brothers, loving and helping them as he could.
Tychicus was a faithful minister, a man called and gifted by Christ to preach the gospel and to minister to the needs of God's dear people. He was a man who had a world-wide vision; he gave his life to reach the people of the world with the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. Tychicus knew where his strength came from, and he drew it from the Lord day by day.
Tychicus was a friend of believers, a messenger of encouragement. The believers of Ephesus were concerned about Paul's welfare while he was in prison, and Paul was concerned that they know he was doing well through the strength of the Lord. But how was Paul going to communicate with the church which was so far away? He would do so through a dear friend and fellow minister, Tychicus.
2. There was the Christian soldier Paul - vs. 23-24. "Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen."
A glimpse into Paul's heart can be gleaned from verses 23 and 24.
Paul was a spiritual brother to other believers. Note that his concern was for the spiritual welfare of others - vs. 23.
a. He wished for them to have peace.
b. He wished for them to have love.
c. He wished for them to have faith.
Paul was a prayer warrior for other believers. He prayed that God's grace would rest upon them - vs. 24.
What a great ending to a wonderful book: A prayer that God's grace would rest upon us. This very theme of God's grace is also spoken in the last verse of the Bible, Revelation 22:21, "The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen." When God's grace rests upon us, it helps put everything we experience here on earth in a better perspective.
QUESTIONS TO PONDER
1. Who do you know personally that reminds you of Tychicus? What things stand out that impress you?
2. What practical differences would be in your life if you were more like Tychicus? What steps do you need to take in order to be more like him?
3. How can these verses help you become a stronger soldier for Christ? How can you become stronger?
4. Think about a time when you experienced the grace of God. What is the secret of keeping strong in His grace?
May the grace of God abound in your life as you seek to live for Him.
Your Friend and HIS,