Anna

Choose to Spread Hope and Joy She never left the temple but worshipped night and day, fasting and praying. Luke 2:37 Life didn’t work out as Anna hoped. Like most other Jewish women, she probably dreamed of marriage to a devout Jewish man, followed by the birth of several sons. But after seven years of marriage, she became a widow, …

Onesimus

Epaphras had been going back and forth delivering letters, but now he remained with Paul in prison. Two new messengers were sent: Tychicus and Onesimus. The first was unknown to the Colossians, but the second was well known to one of them—Philemon. Onesimus was his runaway slave. Paul might have shown Onesimus the letter he was to deliver (Philemon 1:10-21). …

Julius

Willing to Change When it was decided that we would sail for Italy, Paul and some other prisoners were handed over to a centurion named Julius, who belonged to the Imperial Regiment. Acts 27:1[1] Listen to the sailing experts or to the celebrated Jewish prisoner, Paul? The answer must have seemed obvious to Julius, the Roman centurion charged with bringing …

James and Jude

Half-Brothers of Jesus Coming to his hometown, [Jesus] began teaching the people in their synagogue, and they were amazed. “Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers?” they asked. “Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Aren’t all his sisters with us? Where then did …

Euodia and Syntyche

Choose to Agree I plead with Euodia and Syntyche to agree with each other in the Lord. Philippians 4:2 The community of Christians in Philippi was especially dear to the apostle Paul, who established a church in that city on his second missionary trip (Acts 16:6–40). The theme of his letter to the Philippian congregation is living joyfully regardless of …

Matthias

The Twelfth Apostle Therefore it is necessary to choose one of the men who have been with us the whole time the Lord Jesus was living among us, beginning from John’s baptism to the time when Jesus was taken up from us. For one of these must become a witness with us of his resurrection. Acts 1:21-22 After he rose …

Epaphras

Letter Carrier and More Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. Colossians 4:12 Although the apostle Paul was imprisoned in Rome, he touched many people—even us today—with his letters. He couldn’t post these letters …

Lydia

Time to Shift Priorities? “But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ.” Philippians 3:7 Lydia was a savvy businesswoman who had established a relationship with many, if not most, of the wealthiest citizens in Philippi. Her specialty was purple cloth, a high-end fabric that symbolized status in first-century Europe because the dye was …