June 6: Help in Finding Agreement

Read Philippians 4:1-23

Each generation that opens the Word of God has the privilege of discovering those, like Paul and Timothy, Ruth and Naomi, who together accomplished great things.  The descriptions of the Scriptures have caused many to offer to these dynamic duos hero status.

And then, there are Euodia and Syntyche.

The only biblical reference to these two is one that describes them as unable to get along with each other.  They were unable to agree and their disagreement was known to others.

Now before you place them alongside of evil people like Pharaoh of Egypt in the days of Moses or next to Judas in the days of Jesus, take note that there are some positive things said about them.

  1. They were believers.  Paul describes them as among those whose names were recorded in the Book of Life (v. 3).  I am sure that you realize it, but I will state it clearly:  disagreement happens even among followers of Jesus!  You are not immune to it.
  2. They had been active servants of Christ.  Earlier, they had worked right alongside of each other and of the apostle for the gospel’s sake.  Again, it is obvious, but even passionate servants of Christ can experience disagreement.

But, unfortunately, positive Christian testimony is damaged when people are aware of believers that cannot get demonstrate agreement…both in the family and in the church.  And disagreement is contrary to the plan of God for His children.

So what do you do if there is tension with someone?  What do you do if it seems that you just can’t see eye to eye with another believer?  Paul encourages the two to take action.  He pleads with both of them individually to take the initiative.  If you wait for the other person…whether family member or fellow Christian…to make the first move, you may wait a long time.  Show some initiative in your pursuit of mutual agreement.

Meanwhile, Paul also encourages the involvement of a nameless person he refers to as his “true companion.”  This third party was to offer Euodia and Syntyche help in finding common ground.  Don’t be afraid to invite someone to help you sort through or mediate your differences so that you can experience the unifying agreement God desires.

sbk