Two Faces

19 Greet Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus. 20 Erastus remained at Corinth, but Trophimus I left sick at Miletus. 21 Make every effort to come before winter. Eubulus greets you, also Pudens and Linus and Claudia and all the brethren. 22 The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you (2 Timothy 4).

Before signing off with a final blessing, Paul finishes his list of people to mention. He begins with Prisca and Aquila, a faithful couple he first met in Corinth and shared ministry with while on his second missionary journey. He ends with four new friends—Roman believers (all have Latin names) with him in Rome. Stuck in-between are Onesiphorus, who had often visited him there in prison (1:16), and two others, Erastus in Corinth and Trophimus in Miletus.

But in the middle of all of these is an interjection which seems to blurt out on the page: a plea for Timothy to come soon. It’s as if Paul’s subconscious suddenly reminds him of that imminent “departure” he anticipates, so that he reaches out to Timothy to come before winter makes travel impossible. Oh, how he wants to see Timothy’s face just one more time! 

Perhaps for all of us there will be two faces we will long to see at the end of our lives: the face of the closest living loved one, and the face of Jesus on the other side.

Lord, thank You for all the good people (both family and friends) You have placed in our lives. Thank You most of all for Jesus. Help us This Day to appreciate and love them all. Amen.