PAUL’S CARE FOR THE CHURCH
For God is my witness, how greatly I long for you all with the affection of Jesus Christ. [PHILIPPIANS 1:8]
The apostle Paul treated believers with a gracious and tender spirit—he often tempered commands with genuine expressions of love for the people. He had a special place in his heart for the Philippian church. He addressed those believers as his “beloved and longed-for brethren” (Phil. 4:1).
He manifested his love in his desire to remain with them for their “progress and joy in the faith”(1:25). Indeed Paul was willing to be offered “on the sacrifice and service of [their] faith” (2:17). And only the Philippian believers had “shared with [him] concerning giving and receiving” (4:15), which also reveals his special bond with them.
Paul was a logician and theologian without equal—his intellectual capacity was staggering—but he was also endowed with a tremendous capacity to love people. Your ministry can be effective only when you love people.