Friends in the Ministry Colossians 4:7-18 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
At the close of Colossians, Paul greets some at Colossae and sends greetings for others that are with him. So we know that Paul had some ministry friends. In verse 8 we know that his ministry friends were a comfort to the people he ministered to. In verse 11 we find that some of these friends were a comfort to Paul.
Every man in the ministry goes through a very dark time at some point and it is a tremendous comfort to have friends to encourage you. Not only do you need fellowship with God, but you need some friends in the ministry. These friends are:
Beloved brothers (Colossians 3:7) Tychicus and Onesimus were mentioned as being beloved brothers. There are times when friendship is very necessary. Peter called Paul a beloved brother, but there was a time when Peter was to be blamed for his conduct. Paul confronted him about it and they got it straightened out. A real friend will do that for you.
Faithful ministers (Colossians 3:7) Tychicus was a faithful minister. Pastors of other churches can be good friends to other pastors and abide by them when others won’t.
Fellow servants (Colossians 4:7) Paul ministered to serve. One of the unique characteristics of a Bible believing, preaching and teaching church is that the pastor is not a god but a servant and equal to his congregation under Jesus Christ. In Revelation 6:11 white robes were given to the souls under the altar, because they were killed for Jesus. They were to rest until their fellow servants were killed. InRev 19:10 an angel told John not to worship him because he was a fellow servant.
Fellow prisoners (Colossians4:10) Paul has introduced himself as a prisoner of Jesus Christ. He was also imprisoned several times. Would you continue to preach the gospel under persecution? It helps if you have others who will stand with you even in bonds.
Fellow workers (Colossians4:11) Many people get the idea that ministers don’t have much to do. The ministry can be a tremendous amount of work. Paul noted that there were fellow workers with him. In Philippians 4:3 Paul talks about women who labored with him in the Gospel. What are you doing in your church to labor with your pastor in the gospel?
Prayer warriors (Colossians4:12) Paul talks about Epaphras, a man who was fervent in prayer – In 1 Samuel 12:23 we read about Samuel’s prayer forIsrael, “Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way:”
Your pastor should have other men that help him regularly, but can you be a help to your pastor? Are you willing to be a fellow worker with your pastor? And be a prayer warrior?
Zealous workers (Colossians4:13) Paul is still talking about Epaphras, the prayer warrior. Titus 2:14 says that Jesus gave himself for us that he might redeem to himself a people zealous of good works. Always be ready to go to work for the Lord Jesus Christ.
Church planters (Colossians4:15) – They had churches in their houses. This house church was not a church split, but the start of a new church. Are you willing to train to be a pastor yourself?
Quitters (2 Timothy4:10) Demas was a worker with Paul, who abandoned the ministry for the cares of the world. There will always be Christians who fail God’s work. All you can do is encourage them and don’t let yourself get discouraged.