Daily Devotion

Philemon 2

To Appia our sister, to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church in your house.

image of Appia

Verse 2 continues with the greetings that have started in verse 1. Such salutations were common in Pauline letters showing that he valued team ministry. He did not work in isolation but he would have a team to work with wherever he goes. The mention of Appia is an interesting one because she is a female character. Church fathers such as Chrysostom, Theodoret, and Theophylact believe that she might have been the wife of Philemon or perhaps the partner of Paul. Being that case it shows us how inclusive was the ministry of Paul from that very early period of the development of the church.

The subject of gender inclusivity should therefore be treated with respect and seriousness when it comes to the ministry of the church. It is unfortunate to belittle the contribution of women to the spreading of the gospel when we see people like Paul acknowledging them in the first century. From this salutation, we need to take two lessons: 1. The value of team ministry, and, 2. The value of inclusive ministry. Let us apply these two lessons in all facets of our lives.

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