This section is about the messengers who do (and do not) accompany this letter. Paul is not sending Timothy, yet he wants to: “I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, so that I too may be cheered by news of you. For I have no one like him, who will be genuinely concerned for your welfare. For they all seek their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ”(Phil 2:19-21). This is high praise for Timothy. He is unlike any other of Paul’s proteges because his concern for others is so genuine. Paul hopes to send Timothy—and to come with him—soon (Phil 2:23-24).
He does send Epaphroditus with the letter: “I have thought it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, and your messenger and minister to my need, for he has been longing for you all and has been distressed because you heard that he was ill”(Phil 2:25-26). Epaphroditus is from Philippi and must be part of the way they have sent aid to Paul, yet he has been sick and Paul wants everyone to be reassured because the Lord has spared him. “So receive him in the Lord with all joy, and honor such men, for he nearly died for the work of Christ, risking his life to complete what was lacking in your service to me”(Phil 2:29-30). Paul tells the Philippians to honor Epaphroditus and men like him because they have served the Lord at cost to themselves, risking their lives.
It is important that Christians learn to honor men—humble though they may be—who are examples to us of genuine faith. Paul speaks of Timothy and Epaphroditus in glowing terms and instructs the Philippians to honor them because we often fail to recognize admirable traits in people we know well. Christian examples deserve honor.
------------- One Thing to Think About: Who do I know who is living a life for Jesus worthy of honor?
One Thing to Pray For: Appreciation for the positive spiritual influences around me