Written By Angelique Geeringh
The book of Romans is filled with the glorious truth of our redemption in Christ. Many scholars believe that Phoebe was the woman that delivered Paul’s letter to the Romans to the church in Rome. In Romans 16:1-2, Paul calls her ‘a servant of the church’ in her hometown of Cenchrea and writes that ‘indeed she has been a helper of many and of myself also.’
In the original Greek, the same word that describes Phoebe as a ‘servant’ in Romans 16:1 is usually translated ‘minister’ when referring to men. It is likely that Phoebe was indeed a minister or deaconess in her church in Cenchrea. The Greek word translated to ‘helper’ in Romans 16:2 is prostatis. This word is used in classical Greek when describing trainers who dedicated themselves to assist an athlete competing for a prize.
Phoebe clearly exhibited a spirit of servanthood and humility. Her helpful nature may have also earned her the position of a patron in Cenchrea. In such a capacity, she would have been appointed by the leaders of the city to protect the rights of foreign visitors and to help ensure their welfare during their stay. It seems that Phoebe had a love for people and a desire to serve, which benefited both her community and her church.
‘And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.’
Like Phoebe, each of us is born with a purpose and destiny from God. You are no accident! You were not a mistake or born at the wrong time. You are here in this time with the gifts and talents that God wants to express through you, to others. May God bless you abundantly, precious woman of God.