Straighten Up to Fly Right
Verses 2-3 I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. Yes, and I ask you, my true companion, help these women since they have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are in the book of life.
Having reminded his friends in Philippi to stand firm in their faith, Paul gets a little more personal with 2 of his friends.
These two women are mentioned only here in Scripture. Imagine we are sitting in a church gathering and someone announces that there was a letter from a former pastor for the congregation. We are listening along with everyone else and all of a sudden our names are mentioned reminding us to have minds that are united with the Lord’s. There is nothing like getting called out in front of the whole church.
Whether these ladies were arguing or just not seeing eye to eye, Paul finds it important to remind them personally to do what he had already told the whole church in an earlier paragraph of the letter. They are to be united in heart and mind for the work of the Kingdom. But he doesn’t leave them to figure it out themselves. Paul calls out a third person to help them into unity with Christ.
Another key thing to remember in this situation is that Paul is not saying that these women are not unbelievers. The fact that they were not on the same page about whatever issue they were dealing with wasn’t saying that one or both of them were not Christ’s children. Paul points out that not only did they have their name in the book of life, they were fellow workers with him for the kingdom. In fact this is why Paul sees it important enough to call them out by name.
We can find ourselves in similar situations with fellow believers. It is hard to remember that even when we don’t agree with a fellow believer that we don’t let it divide us. Yes, there are absolute truths in Scripture and we should always stand for them but many issues that the enemy would love to use to divide us are just a matter of personal preference and therefore cannot be allowed to interfere with our working together to spread the Gospel. And if it means getting a third party – who is neutral and a believer – then by all means ask for help to gain the needed unity. Do all for the glory of God.
Making It Personal
Who is someone that you struggle to be unified with in the Church? Have you made efforts to be unified with this person or just tried to convince them to see things your way? What do you need to do today to fix the relationship?
Making It Personal Kids
Do you have someone you find it hard to get along with? Why do you find it hard to get along with them? Does Jesus want you to get along with them?
Father, we confess the pride that keeps us divided from people we are called to love and unity with. Give us wisdom to know how to proceed in love for Your glory. In Jesus’ name, amen.