Who are we?

In this blog, there will be a variety of material: thoughts on Bible books, book reviews, historical characters, aspects of Scottish church history and other things.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Tychicus (6:21-22)

In the Bible, there are many unsung heroes who are mentioned briefly in different places. One example is Tychicus, whom Paul describes in verse 21 as ‘the beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord’.

These are a wonderful combination of graces, and their wonder is enhanced when we recall that the relationship of Paul and Tychicus illustrates what Jesus had done in bringing Jews and Gentiles together (Eph. 2:11-17). In their pre-Christian days Paul and Tychicus would have had nothing to do with one another. Now their lives were entwined.

Tychicus is Paul’s beloved brother. Obviously, this reminds us that Christians belong to the same family, that they are the children of God. We noted, when considering Ephesians 1:5, that adoption into God’s family is the height of spiritual blessing. The basic outlook of a family is love and that is true of God’s family. Love is expressed towards God and is also expressed towards one another.

Tychicus was dear to Paul because he saw true love displayed by his friend. Connected to this delight that Paul experienced was his awareness that Tychicus was dependable, revealing his trustworthiness as he functioned as Paul’s faithful minister. Each of them had individual roles to perform as servants of Christ, and Paul affirms that Tychicus did his role well.

It may be useful to ask ourselves two questions. The first is, ‘What do we say about other Christians?’ Do we highlight their positive contributions or their failures? Connected to that first question is a second one, which is perhaps more searching: ‘What would another Christian say about us based on the way we interact with them?’

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