Men of the Bible Series – Silas (Acts 15:22)
Acts 15:22, Then pleased it the apostles and elders with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas and Silas, chief men among the brethren:
Silas, also known as Silvanus, is one of those seemingly minor characters in the New Testament, who was used of God to spread the Gospel (Acts 15-18). Silas (Silvanus) always craved to serve but never hungered for the spotlight. He was a respected leader in the church at Jerusalem. Seven passages in Acts involving Silas begin with an introduction to him as an important member of the church at Jerusalem (Acts 15:22-27; 15:30-41; 16:16-24, 25-40; 17:1-9, 10-15; Acts 18:1-6). Silas played an active role with Paul and Peter From being both a courier and scribe for Peter and a right-hand man with Paul on a few missionary journeys (I Thessalonians 1:1; II Thessalonians 1:1; II Corinthians 1:19; I Peter 5:12). Paul achieved far more for Christ because of a committed co-laborer like Silas. He was a great example of Ecclesiastes 4:9.
Silas, who was a dedicated follower of Christ, was well known for being a faithful companion and committed to the tasks God gave him. He was a leader at Jerusalem among the congregation of the apostles and he assisted them with a glad heart. He was willing to travel with, and suffer with, Paul over several years to spread the Gospel and to nurture the church. Silas was always willing to serve in the ministry, both in the good times as well as the bad times. The faithful service of Silas’ teaching and preaching at the church at Antioch resulted in healthy growth.
Although Silas endured persecution, affliction, and sufferings in the ministry, it never hindered his spirit from service to the Lord. He was jailed with Paul for preaching Jesus. Even in this abused and tired condition, at the late hour of midnight, Silas sings praises to the Lord along with Paul. Then an earthquake occurred and allowed all of the prisoners to be set free. The jailer was stopped from taking his own life, and found the conditions inside the prison to be as Paul had said. He was shaken much more by these strange circumstances than by the earthquake, and the spirit moved him to ask about the way of salvation. Silas is faithful to stay with Paul even though difficulty and danger seem to await Paul at each stop. They were said to have turned the world upside down and as a result, the number of believers continued to grow. Those who suffer along side us during adverse seasons become a great source of strength and encouragement, which for the most part leads to in long lasting friendships. We all go through dark times in our lives. Friends disappoint us, those into whom we have invested our love and efforts turn away, and financial or physical problems we did not expect arise. None of those things take God by surprise. He is still there and still working in our lives even when we cannot immediately see what He is doing. That is where faith comes in—it sings until the lights come back on.
Even if it seemed that Silas was doing simple routine tasks, he always did them with joy and a servant’s heart. We are called to fulfill the course the Lord has set before us and to finish it will well. As Christians, this is our responsibility. We are commissioned with doing those duties we are assigned and doing them with a joyful attitude. As a pastor and servant of the Lord, I’m blessed and eternally grateful for the loving laborers the Lord has allowed me to serve alongside of for more than 25 years. Especially for my wife, Fellowship Baptist Church and certainly the “SNOWBIRDS”. Our name may not be known to many this side of Heaven, but remember, God is watching. Even if no one else sees and hears what you do for the Lord, He will record, remember, and reward you for your faithful service to Him (I Corinthians 15:58).
PRAYER: Lord, help me to always be a loyal co-laborer in the ministry. Regardless, if no one on earth knows what I’ve done or doing for You. Help me to serve You and Your people with gladness and dedication. Keep me faithful in your service while fulfilling Your Great Commission. May I bear much fruit in the harvest field. In Jesus name, Amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.