Reflections: February 10, 2021
Silas, Fellow Worker of St. Peter and St. Paul
By Jacob Ehrhard
By Silvanus, a faithful brother as I regard him, I have written briefly to you, exhorting and declaring that this is the true grace of God. Stand firm in it. (1 Peter 5:12)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Silas, aka Silvanus, was at first a companion of Paul on his second missionary journey, and later became a companion of Peter as well as the secretary by whom Peter wrote his epistle (1 Peter 5:12). He doesn't appear often in the Bible other than in conjunction with Paul and Timothy.
He is introduced along with Judas (Barsabbas) as a prophet (Acts 15:32). We're not told if he predicted the future, but presumably he spoke convincingly concerning God and His promises fulfilled in Christ. That's the reason Paul chose him to go on a missionary journey.
Silas had a gift with words, but he used that gift in service of a greater gift--the Word of God. Both by speech and by pen, Silas "encouraged and strengthened the brothers with many words" (Acts 15:32).
We may not have any record of Silas's sermons, but his writing certainly has encouraged and strengthened you. His pen received dictation from Peter, but it was ultimately moved by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit unites the preaching of Paul, the exhortation and declaration of Peter, and the many words both spoken and written by Silas. These words deliver "the true grace of God," the Gospel. They deliver Jesus. In them you stand firm. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Almighty and everlasting God, Your servant Silas preached the Gospel alongside the apostles Peter and Paul to the peoples of Asia Minor, Greece, and Macedonia. We give You thanks for raising up in this and every land evangelists and heralds of Your kingdom, that the Church may continue to proclaim the unsearchable riches of our Savior, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
-Rev. Jacob Ehrhard is the pastor of St. John's Lutheran Church and School in Chicago, IL.
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