by Philip Layton
Paul ends the letter with further instructions and final greetings
Consider what interaction you may have with ‘outsiders’ (vv 5, 6). In what way can your ‘conversations be always full of grace, seasoned with salt’?
More information about Luke, the author of the Gospel and Acts (v 14)
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Going Deeper From 'Words of Life'
Do you know much about Demas? Perhaps you’ve seen his name, but haven’t paid much attention to it. Yet he appears several times in the New Testament. He was a believer, a companion of Paul, a fellow-worker who even went to the extent of making himself available when Paul was in prison. From there, Paul wrote four New Testament epistles. Demas is mentioned in two of them as being a great help to Paul. He writes to Philemon:
Epaphras, my fellow-prisoner in Christ Jesus, sends you greetings. And so do Mark, Aristarchus, demas and Luke, my fellow-workers (vv 23, 24).
Demas was well known among the churches in Asia Minor. He’d laboured with Paul in earlier years. When Paul went to prison the second time in Rome – a time which would bring his life to an end – Demas was again one of his companions.
Then something tragic happened. We don’t know when the doubts started, but at some point during Paul’s final imprisonment Demas left. He deserted the ship – had a complete change of heart. He left his friend Paul, with no explanation. We assume he also left the Lord, giving up his faith entirely.
Do we know people like this? People so on fire for the Lord, then suddenly leaving it all for the world; for ‘better’ things. Maybe it’s to do with money; perhaps an unhealthy relationship. Or because they thought they had all the answers. Is it a close friend? One of our own children? Nothing grieves our heart more, since we long for them to return.
There are lots of things ‘out there’ that can tempt people. It’s a battle; so we must pray fervently for those who have doubted, then deserted. We’re not to judge – for this is only for God. We’re to simply pray, and if we have the opportunity stay in friendly contact – believing one day a miracle will happen!
Beverly IvanyTags: Colossians