Philippians 4:3
Yes, and I ask you, my true yokefellow, to help these women who have labored with me for the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.
Sermons
Christian CooperationG. H. Slater.Philippians 4:3
Fellow LabourersJ. Vaughan, M. A.Philippians 4:3
Help the WomenWeekly PulpitPhilippians 4:3
Lay HelpDean Vaughan.Philippians 4:3
NamesJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:3
Names in the BookC. S. Robinson, D. D.Philippians 4:3
Names in the Book of LifeAlexander MaclarenPhilippians 4:3
One Woman's WorkChristian AgePhilippians 4:3
The Book of LifeJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:3
The Early Christian WomenW. Baxendale.Philippians 4:3
The Faithful ColleagueJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:3
Unknown WorkersJ. F. B. Tinling, B. A.Philippians 4:3
Woman's WorkDean Vaughan.Philippians 4:3
Woman's WorkH. Johnson.Philippians 4:3
Women in the ChurchJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:3
Christian LoveJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
Christian LoveJames Hamilton, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
Christian StabilityC. Hodge, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
Christian SteadfastnessWeekly PulpitPhilippians 4:1-3
Dearly Beloved and Longed ForJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
Love the Gauge of ManhoodH. W. Beecher.Philippians 4:1-3
Ministerial QualificationsJ. Hall, D. D., A. Maclaren, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
Paul an Example of Ministerial Solicitude and AffectionR. P. Buddicom, M. A.Philippians 4:1-3
Stand FastC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 4:1-3
Stand FastC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 4:1-3
Steadfastness in the LordR. Johnstone, LL. B.Philippians 4:1-3
The Bright Side of a Minister's LifeT. De Witt Talmage, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
The Minister's Joy and CrownR. Johnstone, LL. B.Philippians 4:1-3
The Pastor's Joy and CrownJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
The Professional MinisterT. Guthrie, D. D.Philippians 4:1-3
The Secret of SteadfastnessS. S. ChroniclePhilippians 4:1-3
The Watchword for Today, Stand FastC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 4:1-3
Unity of Service At PhilippiH. Quick.Philippians 4:1-3
Genuine ChurchismD. Thomas Philippians 4:1-6
Various ExhortationsR. Finlayson Philippians 4:1-7
The Life of Joy and PeaceR.M. Edgar Philippians 4:1-9
A Touching Personal AppealT. Croskery Philippians 4:2, 3
The Healing of DissensionsV. Hutton Philippians 4:2, 3
I exhort Euodias, and I exhort Syntyche, that they be of the same mind in the Lord.

I. WOMEN HELD A LEADING PLACE IN THE CHRISTIAN SOCIETY OF PHILIPPI.

1. It was to women that the apostle first preached the gospel in that Roman town. (Acts 16.) They were the first converts to Christianity in Europe.

2. It was women who first gave hospitable reception to the apostle in a town which never ceased to show him substantial kindness.

3. It was probably owing to the prominence of Christian women at Philippi that the apostle became such a debtor to the most liberal of all the Churches. Their sympathetic natures would initiate and sustain projects of Christian generosity.

II. THE TWO WOMEN HERE ADDRESSED WERE EVIDENTLY INFLUENTIAL MEMBERS OF THE CHURCH.

1. They were ladies of rank, who disiplayed an active zeal for the cause of Christ. Their names appear in the ancient inscriptions. The women of Macedonia held a high social place in that age. These good women helped the apostle in Christian labors, "Inasmuch as they labored with me in the gospel." As women were not allowed to preach (1 Timothy 2:12), it is evident that their service was of a more private kind, either in instructing, the young or, more probably, in instructing female converts who were not accessible to members of the other sex. The order of deaconesses evidently arose out of some necessity of this sort.

2. They had differences of a sort calculated to mar their influence and to shake the faith of converts. The differences were less probably in the way of religious opinion than of methods of religious work. Perhaps a difference of temperament may have put them out of sympathy with each other, and a spirit of rivalry may have led to unseemly dissensions the Church.

3. There is an urgency in the apostolic appeal which displays an anxiety on their account. He says, "I exhort Euodias, and I exhort Syntyche," as if he regarded them both as equally open to censure. He thus addresses his appeal to each individually. He counsels them to find in the Lord the true center of their unity. Let them think as the Lord thinks, do as the Lord does, and submit to his supreme guidance in the sphere of their Christian labors.

4. He appeals to his true yokefellow - whoever he or she may have been - to use his influence to effect a reconciliation between the two ladies. "Yea, I ask thee to assist them, inasmuch us they labored with me in the gospel." There is no more important, though delicate, service than to promote a better understanding between two Christian people whose paths have disagreeably crossed each other.

5. The importance of the case is roundest from the leading place that the apostle assigns to the two ladies, besides "Clement and other my fellow-workers, whoso names are written in the book of life." They held a distinguished place beside these laborers. If Clement was the well-known author of the Epistle to the Corinthians, they are distinguished by association with his venerable name. If the apostle's other fellow-workers are unnamed, they are named in the book of life. This suggestive phrase implies that

(1) salvation is an individual thing, for individual names have their record on high;

(2) that their salvation is an event already fore-ordained; and

(3) therefore absolutely certain. - T.C.







I intreat thee also, true yokefellow
I.HIS CHARACTER.

II.HIS WORK.

III.HIS REWARD.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

We have here a lively picture of lay help as it was in apostolic times. Of all the actors in this busy scene there is no proof that anyone was "ordained." Who St. Paul's "yokefellow" was we know not. If Epaphroditus, there is nothing to show that he was in the ministry as we understand the term. As "apostle" (Philippians 2:25) of the Philippians he was simply a messenger, and the other expressions in the same verse do not imply office. There is nothing to prove that Clement was the illustrious bishop of Rome. He is only mentioned as one of Paul's many "fellow labourers," whom it is quite gratuitous to confound with the bishops and deacons.

2. But the clear words of the text carry us a step further. Women are among the fellow toilers. And here, too, it would be a narrowing idea to suppose that they were deaconesses. It is simply as fellow Christians that they are fellow labourers.

3. There the particular help invited has nothing clerical in its nature. The original bids these friends join in the reconciliation of Euodia and Syntyche. The persons addressed, the persons described, and the help asked for, enforce to one duty, that of laymen consecrating themselves to Divine service. The idea that all the offices of piety and charity are to be heaped upon the clergy; that it is unnecessary and presumptuous for an unordained man to put his hand to the plough of Christian labour, is so directly opposed to every principle of the gospel, that it would have received St. Paul's heaviest condemnation. Christ has called us to a corporate life, a body having many members, each with its office, and all equally helpful and essential (Romans 12:4-5).

I. NOTE THE ADVANTAGES OF ASSOCIATION IN STIMULATING, DIRECTING, AND ECONOMIZING LABOR. Multitudes of men and women stand idle in the Church's market place and give as their excuse, "No man hath hired us." That excuse never, indeed, had any truth in it. Creation, Redemption, Conscience, the Gospel, the Spirit, are enough to silence the plea that God hath no call for us. But how many converted souls have asked themselves, a minister, or a friend, "What shall I do?" without meeting with a response. The principle of association meets this want, giving assurance of sympathy, direction, and help. Loneliness in feeling is melancholy, in working paralysis. United effort prevents superfluous labour upon a spot already cultivated, and directs it on neglected spheres.

II. THE VARIETY OF AGENCIES OFFERED TO THE CHRISTIAN WORKMAN. There is nothing too small to be reckoned, too secular to be consecrated when it has to do with Christ's Church, whether instruction of the young in Sunday or night school, visiting the sick, joining the choir, or placing the worshippers in order and quietness, or bringing the Church by decorations into unison with the joys of Christmas, Easter, etc. All are not bidden to rush into one kind of service, but each is asked to do what is most suitable to his gifts heartily as unto Christ.

III. THE REWARD OF THE WORKER (Proverbs 11:25). There is a reaction of good, not least, upon him. It is a great thing to see for ourselves things of which we have idly read in books; want and sorrow so light in the abstract, so heavy in the enduring; to be shamed out of our luxury, loitering, listless, dreamy, self-indulgent intellectualism; to be enabled to see that in our little part of our day we are decidedly on the side of good, which is the side of Christ.

(Dean Vaughan.)

I. THEIR MINISTERS.

1. Prayer.

2. Sympathy.

3. Private effort.

4. Words of love.

II. THEIR CLAIMS.

1. To encouragement.

2. To protection.

3. To help.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

Weekly Pulpit.
The service of women to the cause of truth has been invaluable in all ages. The old Testament is full of it, and the Christian Church has always been blest with it. Women ministered to the wants of the Saviour, succoured the apostles, and contributed to the spread of the gospel in many ways.

I. WOMEN NOBLY ENGAGED. By both nature and position, woman has facilities and opportunities for work that men do not possess.

1. In the work of teaching. In the home, in the Sunday School, and in the mission hall, the services of pious women are conspicuous. Timothy was instructed in the Scriptures by his mother and his grandmother.

2. In works of benevolence. Charity is almost natural to woman. We read of Dorcas, who made garments for the poor.

3. In visiting the sick. Woman is the best visitor in the sick room. Her tenderness, and often her helpfulness, prove her fitness for the work. The life of Elizabeth Fry could not be written of any man. Nightingale, the songstress of mercy at the head of the ambulance corps, was another, whose ministry helped forward the gospel.

4. Mission work abroad. The missionary's wife is the mother of the tribe among whom she labours. In many parts of the world — for example, in India — the seclusion to which all women are banished precludes access to them except by woman.

II. SUCH WORK MUST BE ENCOURAGED. Like all workers, they need the heart and hand of the Church to support them.

1. Help them by sympathy and tenderness. Let them see that they share our full confidence. A word of cheer is helpful to those toilers. St. Paul was careful to greet them, and to acknowledge their services.

2. Supply them with the means of doing good. They often want relief for the poor, which they cannot supply.

3. Pray for them.

4. Bear your share of their burden. Take upon you the heaviest end of the work.

(Weekly Pulpit.)

1. Sympathy was a strong characteristic of St. Paul, an instance of which is his fondness for the word "fellowship;" Fellow heirs, citizens, prisoners, servants, soldiers, workers, labourers.

2. Fellowship was the first necessity of our creation. "It is not good for man to be alone." It is a high part of our religion, a preparation for the society, unity, and choruses of heaven.

3. Fellowship of labour stands in immediate connection with "the book of life." Are we then enrolled together as labourers? Will none be there who have not laboured? Is "the communion of saints" a communion of workers for God? Will it be so forever in heaven? What an argument for the united labours in the Church?

I. THE WHOLE GENIUS OF CHRISTIANITY IS WORK. "Go work." "Work while it is day." "Let men see your good works." The end of all work is the extension of the Kingdom of God. Christianity, unlike other religions, is essentially propagating. It is, therefore, compared to that which emits and cannot but emit; leaven, light. The test of all at the last day will be what we have done.

II. THIS IS A DIFFERENT CONCEPTION OF RELIGION TO THAT WHICH IS HELD BY MANY RELIGIOUS PEOPLE. There is a spiritual as well as a natural selfishness. It is not selfish to pray the prayers which are all for ourselves, to take an interest only in our own souls, to know the greatest of all happiness, and not impart it to others?

III. IN THIS WORK MINISTERS AND PEOPLE MUST COOPERATE. All the commands to extend the kingdom of Christ are binding on clergy and laity alike.

IV. THE SAFETY OF ANYONE WHO IS NOT A LABOURER IN THE VINEYARD IS VERY DOUBTFUL. The condition of going into the vineyard was a wish to work. None are to simply go into the grounds, to pick flowers, to eat the fruit, but all to work. And the reckoning at the end was of the work done.

V. IT IS A WONDERFUL ARRANGEMENT THAT GOD HAS COMMITTED THIS WORK TO SINNERS, not to the heavenly hosts. But our weakness is our strength; our sinfulness is our argument. For who can sympathize with sinners but a sinner?

VI. NO ONE CAN UNDERTAKE THIS WORK WHO HAS NOT A LOVE FOR CHRIST AND SINNERS.

(J. Vaughan, M. A.)

I.ITS AUTHOR.

II.ITS PUBLICATION; at the last day.

III.ITS CONTENTS: the names of the faithful.

IV.ITS EFFECT: life.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

There is pathos in a human name, for it always represents a life, an experience, a history, a destiny. Sometimes in the Scriptures "names" mean souls (Acts 1:15).

I. SOME OBSERVATIONS.

1. It is a great thing to have a name in the New Testament. Think of the roll call in the sixteenth of Romans and the eleventh of Hebrews!

2. It is a great thing now to have a name in the family Bible; for that generally signifies Christian training and parental prayers.

3. It is a great thing to have a name upon the pages of a Church register. How affecting are these old manuals, with their lists of pious men and women, many of whom have passed into the skies!

4. It is the greatest thing of all to have a name in the Lamb's Book of Life. Beyond all fame (Matthew 11:11). Beyond all power (Luke 10:20).

II. SOME QUESTIONS.

1. In how many books is your name written now?

2. How can a human name be written securely in the Lamb's Book of Life?

3. To backsliders: Are you going to return to your name, or do you want it to come back to you?

4. To Christian workers: How many names have you helped to write in the Book of Life?

5. Is there any cheer in thinking how our names will sound when the "books are opened" in the white light of the throne?

(C. S. Robinson, D. D.)

I. WHOSE NAMES ARE WRITTEN THERE? Those of —

1. The faithful labourer.

2. The patient sufferer.

3. The victorious combatant.

4. The despised saint.

II. HOW THEY CAME TO BE WRITTEN THERE?

1. Through grace.

2. By the blood of Jesus.

3. The Spirit of God.

III. WHY ARE THEY WRITTEN THERE? Because —

1. Citizens of heaven.

2. Heirs of the promises.

3. Precious in the sight of God.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

Union is power. The most attenuated thread when, sufficiently multiplied will form the strongest cable. A single drop of water is a powerless thing, but an infinite number of drops united by the force of attraction will form a stream, and many streams combined will form a river, till rivers pour their water into the mighty ocean, whose proud waves, defying the power of man, none can stay but He who formed them. And thus for us, which, acting singly, are utterly impotent, are, when acting in combination, resistless.

(G. H. Slater.)

A woman may labour with an apostle in the gospel, without departing one step from the propriety of her position, or the delicacy of her character; she can work a good work for Christ, and for the performance or neglect of it she must hereafter give account. By example, by influence, by meek endurance, by active sympathy, she can do all that a man cannot do, in the society of her equals, and in the homes of the suffering.

(Dean Vaughan.)

Women, you can give and serve and pray. You can give self-denyingly, serve lovingly, pray conqueringly. The best examples of self-denying liberality, of loving service, of conquering prayer are recorded of woman. It was no great gift, service, prayer. The gift was a widow's mite. The service was the anointing of Jesus with a box of ointment. The prayer was a mother's prayer for a daughter possessed with a devil. But the gift and service and prayer were in self-denial and love and faith. And so in the sight of God they were of great price.

(H. Johnson.)

Who has not heard of John Wesley? Yet how few are acquainted with Peter Bohler, who brought him to Christ.

(J. F. B. Tinling, B. A.)

Christian Age.
An American paper tells the story of a woman who, because tired of a life mainly employed in eating and dressing, resolved to devote herself and her money to a nobler purpose. At the close of the war she went to a sandy island off the Atlantic coast, where about two hundred persons were living in poverty and ignorance, and established her home there, with the intention of benefiting the inhabitants. She began with teaching, by example, how to cultivate the land lucratively, and was soon imitated. Next she established a school for the children, and afterwards a church. Now the island is a thriving region, with an industrious and moral population, the change being the work of one woman.

(Christian Age.)

"What women these Christians have!" exclaimed the heathen rhetorician Libanius, on learning about Anthusa, the mother of John Chrysostom, the famous "golden-mouthed" preacher of the gospel at Constantinople in the fourth century. Anthusa, at the early age of twenty, lost her husband, and thenceforward devoted herself wholly to the education of her son, refusing all offers of further marriage. Her intelligence and piety moulded the boy's character, and shaped the destiny of the man, who, in his subsequent position of eminence, never forgot what he owed to maternal influence. Hence, it would be no overstrained assertion to say that we owe those rich homilies of Chrysostom, of which interpreters of Scripture still make great use, to the mind and heart of Anthusa.

(W. Baxendale.)

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