Archives for posts with tag: ministry

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve taken a screenshot of Deuteronomy 24.17-22 so that you can see how often the word “sojourner” suddenly appears in the text.  The word can also be translated “alien, stranger, foreigner, or resident alien.”  It refers to the people living in Israel who were not Hebrew.  These were immigrants or aliens residing in the land and they were very often poor.  Notice how God’s heart and concern were for the alien, and he wanted the people to be for them also because they had once been foreigners themselves in the land of Egypt.

Notice also that they were grouped together with the fatherless and the widow.  The reason for this is that orphans and widows, along with resident foreigners, were often the most financially vulnerable in the country.  This was the position of Naomi and Ruth when they returned from Moab after the great famine.  Indeed, Ruth herself went out and gleaned grain left over from those who had harvested the crop so that she and Naomi could survive.

The point of all this is that the most vulnerable in society should be the ones that the people were most concerned about.  We see this same concern in the New Testament as well.  One of the instructions that we see again and again there is to remember the poor.

How we remember the poor and how we serve them is a matter for our own wisdom and creativity to figure out in our particular culture.  Tim Keller has written an excellent book on that particular subject that is well worth reading.  That we remember and serve the poor, is not a subject for debate because this is one of the clear commands of Scripture, and something we see practiced throughout the Bible.

 

  Colossians 4:17

And say to Archippus, “See that you fulfill the ministry that you have received in the Lord.”
A comment that makes little sense to us now, since we don’t know who Archippus was (or we have only a guess) nor do we know what his ministry was.
Having said that, there is a good principle to be gathered from this short, personal comment.  Archippus had a ministry from The Lord, Paul encouraged him to fulfill it.  Was he reluctantly? Reticent? Not sure what the ministry was? Sure what it was, but avoiding it? We don’t know.
What we do know is that, as followers of Christ with gifting from the Holy Spirit, we have a ministry also.  With Archippus, we are to fulfill our ministry.
CalvinSo far as I can conjecture, this Archippus was, in the mean time, discharging the office of pastor, during the absence of Epaphras; but perhaps he was not of such a disposition as to be sufficiently diligent of himself without being stirred up.