#184 – SOLDIER (3/9/20)
If you missed Sunday's broadcast, please catch up by following the link below. (For the foreseeable future, we will be running our Sunday morning services digitally. Please go to our website on Sundays at 10:30 to join in)
‘But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs. For he longs for all of you and is distressed because you heard he was ill. Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow. Therefore I am all the more eager to send him, so that when you see him again you may be glad and I may have less anxiety. So then, welcome him in the Lord with great joy, and honour people like him, because he almost died for the work of Christ. He risked his life to make up for the help you yourselves could not give me.’ (Philippians 2:25-30)
All three terms - ‘brother (sister), co-worker and fellow soldier’ - are vital. We need to be a loving, devoted family; we also need to work together to get things done for God; but we also need to recognise that we are under attack and need to fight together.
1. Fellow soldier means obedience
Soldiers obey their commanding officer, we obey Jesus. To be a fellow soldier is to seek God’s will personally and to seek God’s will with and for your local church.
2. Fellow soldier means mutual protection
Epaphroditus risked his life to provide for and encourage Paul. In our relationships with other Christians, it’s important to protect them when we can. When someone is struggling with temptation or doubt, for example, how can we protect them?
3. Fellow solder means a shared mission
Many people play combat computer games where you work with others on a shared mission. Paul and the church in Philippi had the same mission to make disciples - to help people come to Jesus and grow in maturity.
4. Fellow soldier means to fight together
Christian do not fight physically. Our fighting is, principally, through prayer. We are to pray personally, but are also to be loyal in our attendance at church prayer meetings. The enemy will do all he can to stop you from praying because a praying church is a great power for good.
Are we AWOL (Absent without leave)? Are you a fellow soldier? Do you have my back? Can we depend on each other?
Meditate on and pray out of Ephesians 6:10-20.
COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY
Some groups are not meeting in August. However, if you do meet, please use one of the daily studies and the questions below as the basis of your study together.
1. What is the Holy Spirit speaking to you about (maybe from Sunday's message or your bible reading this week)?
2. What will you do in response?
3. How can we pray for you?