I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a servant[a] of the church at Cenchreae, 2 that you may welcome her in the Lord in a way worthy of the saints, and help her in whatever she may need from you, for she has been a patron of many and of myself as well. 3 Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus, 4 who risked their necks for my life, to whom not only I give thanks but all the churches of the Gentiles give thanks as well. 5 Greet also the church in their house. Greet my beloved Epaenetus, who was the first convert[b] to Christ in Asia. 6 Greet Mary, who has worked hard for you. 7 Greet Andronicus and Junia,[c] my kinsmen and my fellow prisoners. They are well known to the apostles,[d] and they were in Christ before me. 8 Greet Ampliatus, my beloved in the Lord. 9 Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and my beloved Stachys. 10 Greet Apelles, who is approved in Christ. Greet those who belong to the family of Aristobulus. 11 Greet my kinsman Herodion. Greet those in the Lord who belong to the family of Narcissus. 12 Greet those workers in the Lord, Tryphaena and Tryphosa. Greet the beloved Persis, who has worked hard in the Lord. 13 Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord; also his mother, who has been a mother to me as well. 14 Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas, and the brothers[e] who are with them. 15 Greet Philologus, Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas, and all the saints who are with them. 16 Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the churches of Christ greet you. – Romans 16:1-16
Every one of us wants significance. How do you find significance? How does one make a significant life? For most people the answer is found in what they have, where they live, or what they do. While none of these things are unimportant, none of these are a good answer to what gives a person significance.
In Romans 1:1 it says, “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle.” Now Paul served as an apostle, but his identity was found in being a servant of Jesus Christ. That is where Paul found his identity and significance. The significance of a servant is found in the one he serves. It is not where Paul served so much, or what he did to serve, as it is Who it was that he served that made his life significant.
Romans 16:3 says, “Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus.” So, they were Paul’s helpers, but they were Paul’s helpers because they were all serving the Lord Jesus.
In Romans 16:5 it talks about the “first fruits unto Christ.” In verse 7 it speaks of those who were “in Christ” before Paul was. In verse 8 it talks about those “beloved in the Lord.” In verse 10 it speaks of one who was “approved.” How? Not by what he did, but “in Christ.” Verse 11 says, “Greet them.” How were they to greet them? They were to greet them “in the Lord.” In verse 12 there were those who labored. How? In the Lord. Verse 13 says “chosen.” In what way were they “chosen”? The answer is “in the Lord.” In verse 22, Paul’s scribe greeted these people in this church. How? He greeted them “in the Lord.” Paul’s entire life was defined by Who he served, how he served, and what he did in order to serve.
There is only one negative spot in this entire chapter and it is found in verses 17-18 when Paul is talking about those who were causing divisions. “For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly.” What you find is that we are to accept those that serve Christ and to avoid those that serve self.
If you find your significance in what you do, then that is tenuous at best. What you do is not insignificant, but you can lose the ability to do what you do. Your value is found in Who you serve. What you do is not unimportant, but nothing is unimportant if you are serving Christ.
– Evangelist Wil Rice
First Light Devotionals