Colossians 4:7-9 Tychicus will tell you all the news about me. He is a dear brother, a faithful minister and fellow-servant in the Lord. I am sending him to you for the express purpose that you may know about our circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts. He is coming with Onesimus, our faithful and dear brother, who is one of you. They will tell you everything that is happening here.
Do you ever pause and think about the importance of Christian fellowship in your walk with Jesus?
The Sovereign Lord calls us to himself individually, and the Holy Spirit instils in us a personal faith that we need to own for ourselves. We can’t travel to heaven on someone else’s passport! But the Lord doesn’t leave us on our own on our pilgrimage – he incorporates us into the ‘Body of Christ’, the Church, so that we might experience mutual encouragement and growth in grace as we interact constantly with other believers along the way.
Even the Apostle Paul was aware of this need! What a joy it was to him, as he endured the confinement of a Roman prison, to have faithful and reliable fellow-believers like Tychicus and Onesimus, to send to the Church at Colosse to be ‘ambassadors’ for him. They were men he could trust to speak truthfully and faithfully because he could see clear evidence of the fruit of the Spirit in their lives. This was particularly significant in the case of Onesimus who had previously escaped (illegally) from his master, Philemon (see Philemon 1:10—18), in Colosse. (It was probably also among his entrusted duties to deliver Paul’s letter to Philemon as well as this letter to the Colossians).
Do we recognise our mutual dependence on our fellow-believers as we seek to serve the Lord? Moreover, are we faithful Christian friends on whom others can depend? Do we always speak encouragingly to and about one another? Do we avoid any form of gossip or less-than-encouraging reports to or about one another? Do we always consciously strive to be faithful ambassadors of the Lord Jesus Christ in all we do? Are we encouraged by noticing life-changing spiritual growth and understanding in ourselves and others? Do we publicly acknowledge our dependence on one another and avoid the ‘one-man-band’, ‘my-way-or-the-highway’, approach to our ministry and service?
– Bruce Christian