And I intreat thee also, true yokefellow, help those women which laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with other my fellowlabourers, whose names are in the book of life. ~Philippians 4:3
Back in the day, the corner grocery stores, drycleaners, family-owned restaurants, and other store-front businesses would advertise for workers by putting up a sign that said, “Help Wanted.” That was an invitation for someone with minimum skills to apply for a job. In our devotion this morning, Paul was requesting someone he referred to as “true yokefellow” that his help was wanted.
We see the reputation.
The word “yokefellow” was a word that described someone who was united in association with another in marriage, business, labor, study, or the like. It was a term that described a close comrade, consort, colleague, or partner. A yokefellow had something very special in common with another person. In the context of the passage, the yokefellow referred to a born-again believer who shared a strong tie with other believers in the proclamation of the gospel. It had the idea of someone who passionately gave himself to promoting the gospel message. Everywhere Paul ministered, God raised up “true yokefellows” who were very valuable in helping him in the work. As a yokefellow, we identify ourselves as someone who comes alongside of others who preach the gospel.
We see the request.
The church at Philippi had matured to the point where there were women who were vibrant gospel witnesses. I think Lydia and the young woman delivered from demonic control in Acts 16 were among these women. Paul describes these women as having labored with him in the gospel. They were like ladies in our church who give out gospel tracts at every opportunity, witness wherever they go, and invite people to church for every service. Paul was thankful for these women, who had a passionate love for Christ and His gospel. He intreated, or literally begged, his “true yokefellow” to help those women. His desire was that just as the yokefellow came to his side to help him, even so he wanted the yokefellow to come to the side of these women.
We see the reach.
Paul realized that a yokefellow has a reach that extends further than just a few. Paul encouraged this true yokefellow to also come alongside of his friend, Clement, and other fellow laborers. In application, all of us can be true yokefellows with the gospel. We can do this by supporting the organized soulwinning outreach of our church. We can do this by participating in Faith Promise Missions support of our church planters and missionaries on foreign soil. We can do this by being in the background and praying for our soulwinners when they go out. Instead of the responsibility of bearing the precious seed of God’s Word left to a few, all of us can be dependable and trustworthy yokefellows! Sometimes, it is just being the silent partner that bolsters the faith of the other soulwinner.
Yes, your help is wanted! Your help is wanted to witness and reach the lost with the gospel. Your help is wanted in expanding the reach of the church. Your help is wanted in praying daily for the gospel to be communicated and given to more people. Be a true yokefellow: someone who closely comes to the side of those who are giving themselves as gospel witnesses.
Have a gospel-centric God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Proverbs 22-23