1 Corinthians 16:15–18: I urge you, brethren—you know the household of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have devoted themselves to the ministry of the saints—that you also submit to such, and to everyone who works and labors with us. I am glad about the coming of Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus, for what was lacking on your part they supplied. For they refreshed my spirit and yours. Therefore acknowledge such men.
These were Paul’s helpers, and they labored (“toiled to the point of exhaustion”) for the Lord. What a wonderful thing it is when an entire family serves the Lord faithfully in the local church.
Stephanas was joined by Fortunatus and Achaicus as an official committee sent from Corinth to Ephesus to confer with Paul about church problems. Paul saw in them a representation of the entire church; their love to Paul compensated for Paul’s absence from Corinth. But these men did more than share problems with Paul; they also refreshed his spirit and brought him blessing.
This is a good place to encourage church members to refresh and encourage their pastor. Too often, believers share only problems and burdens with their spiritual leaders, and rarely share the blessings. Who is the pastor’s pastor? To whom does the pastor turn for spiritual refreshment and encouragement? Every church member, if he will, can help refresh the pastor and make his burdens lighter. Paul encouraged the church to honor this very special family and submit to their spiritual leadership. It is right to honor faithful Christians if God gets the glory. 1
- Read 1 Thessalonians 2:7-9. What kind of servant are you for Jesus?
Thought to Share
To submit to another means you can submit to the will of God. – TWEET IT
Lord, thank You for all those who serve in the church for Your glory.
1. Wiersbe, W. W. (1996). The Bible exposition commentary. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.