I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord.
Yes, and I ask you, my true companion, help these women since they have contended
at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers,
whose names are in the book of life. Philippians 5:2-3
As I look through photo albums of family memories the evidence of the genetic code God has woven into each one of us is clear. Although each family member is different, there are unifying qualities throughout the family tree — we resemble each other.
From the outset of Philippians, the Apostle Paul calls for unity to be the identifying mark of the Philippian church:
“Make my joy complete by being like-minded.” (Philippians 2:2)
His urging them to have the same love, mind, and spirit recalls Jesus’ prayer in the garden before His arrest where He prayed that Christians would be unified just as He is with the Father and Holy Spirit. (John 17:21-22)
Unity is in our spiritual DNA.
“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” (1 Corinthians 12:27)
Paul’s urging in Chapter 2 is followed by a direct plea for unity between two prominent members of the Philippian church, Euodia and Syntyche. Standouts in ministry, these women contended for the gospel alongside Paul, and the discord that erupted between them threatened the unity of “the body of Christ” in Philippi.
Could it be that one believed her longstanding membership in the church afforded her more rights than the other?
Did a selfish desire to control a ministry come between them?
Did one take action without considering the thoughts and feelings of the other?
Did their commitment to service overtake their devotion to God?
Does any of this sound familiar? How do we get back to resembling the unity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit?
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 2:5)
We consider Jesus, and we adopt his attitude. We bow low; we surrender to the One who gave up all rights and status to restore us to Himself. With changed hearts and renewed minds, discord is replaced by unity of purpose, spirit, mutual appreciation, and love — a unified people, God’s family.
Today: Read Philippians 4:1-5