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Silvanus

Another of the apostle Paul's companions was a man called Silvanus, sometimes shortened to Silas. And he worked with Peter too, for Peter writes about him at the close of his first epistle. In fact, it seems as though Silvanus was the scribe who wrote at Peter's dictation, for he says "By Silvanus, our faithful brother, as I account him, I have written unto you briefly, exhorting, and testifying that this is the true grace of God: stand ye fast therein".

What a great commendation! "Our faithful brother". He was a brother in Christ, and also in the Lord. In Christ, because they were both, through personal faith in the Lord Jesus, baptized by Him in the Holy Spirit into the Church which is His Body. They were new creatures in Christ. And "in the Lord" because, of their own free choice, they'd yielded themselves to the Lord, to do His will, and the outward evidence of that fact had been seen in their water baptism as disciples of the Lord Jesus, and their commitment to service in churches of God.

And in that course to which Silvanus had voluntarily given himself, he had proved faithful, at least by Peter's wise reckoning. The great reckoning day is still to come, of course, when all who have served the Lord Jesus will stand before His judgement seat and receive His assessment of their life's service. Silvanus will be there in that day, and so will you and I. And we shall each give an account of our service and how we have used our lives since first we put our trust in the Saviour.

Silvanus did well as far as we can judge from the Bible record. He and Timothy were linked with the apostle Paul in the two letters to the Thessalonians. And writing to the Corinthians Paul said, "The Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, even by me and Silvanus and Timothy" (2 Cor. 1:19). So Silvanus was a preacher, too. He preached the Son of God as the Saviour of men and women. And he was a leader among his brethren, for when the decision of the Jerusalem conference in Acts 15 had to be conveyed back to the church in Antioch, Silas was one of the men chosen for the task. Along with Judas Barsabbas he was referred to as a chief man among his brethren. And the record of his life and service is given for our encouragement, so that we might pattern our lives on his example.