“And Tychicus I have sent to Ephesus.”
This little phrase catches my eye early one morning, as I read Apostle Paul’s letter to Timothy.
It speaks volumes, I think.
Who is this man Tychicus, and why is Paul sending him to Ephesus?
My good friend Google Esq. informs me that Rome, where Paul is currently held prisoner, is more than 2,000 Km away from Ephesus.
Two Thousand Kilometers!
How many days will it take Brother Tychicus to get to Ephesus from Rome, I wonder?
He will have to speed-walk and camel-ride through 2,000 kilometers of rough terrain, and possibly even a few hostile natives, to get there.
This is the first century AD, brethren.
Plus, I can see there are at least two treacherous water bodies to cross before he gets to the brethren at Ephesus.
And then there’s the small matter of deranged Emperor Nero, who is more than able (and very willing) to decimate a few thousand Christians by lunch.
Then I consider what Paul has placed in Brother Tychicus’ hands.
It is a letter.
Diligently written (presumably in Greek), and nicely bound, (presumably in leather) and totaling a good 2,422 words.
And I begin to see the seriousness of the matter.
This letter is a highly important missive – signed, sealed and awaiting delivery, to some faithful worshipers at Ephesus.
I think about some of my favorite teachings from this letter, spiritual lessons I have had the privilege to learn almost 2,000 years after Tychicus’ torturous hike.
“..Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.”
“Put on the whole armor of God..”
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood..”
Then it occurs to me – if not for faithful Tychicus, how would I ever have heard some of Paul’s most powerful teachings?
Instructions such as to “gird my loins with the belt of truth” and “put on the breastplate of righteousness”, and brandish the sword of the Spirit, at all times, against my foes?
And that these foes are actually principalities and powers and all sorts of wickedness in high places?
How honest and dependable this man Tychicus must have been, to engender such complete trust from Paul!
How committed he must have been to the work of the Kingdom, to risk life and limb, just to deliver this single piece of parchment to the brothers and sisters at Ephesus!
And today, nestled within the pages of my Bible is Paul’s precious letter, now simply known as The Book of Ephesians.
Dear Lord, let my feet be truly shod with the preparation of the Gospel, like this man, Tychicus!
“And Tychicus I have sent to Ephesus.”2 Timothy 4:12
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” Ephesians 6:10
“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6: 11-12
Also: Ephesians 6: 14-18