by Andy M


In the book of Philippians, Paul addresses the Philippian church as partners in the gospel (Phil 1:3-5). Let’s be conformed to the pattern of scripture and shape our view of church partnership from the scriptures.  Unity in the gospel empowered the Philippian church to be good partners.  We too can lead our churches to be an other-centered community that strategically invests in our sent ones.  We want to be a steady partner that has genuine concern for others (Phil 4:10).  We also want to be so committed to our partners that we would stand even in the midst of trouble to strengthen the work of the gospel (Phil 4:14-16). The Philippians are an example to us that is worthy to emulate. 

The Phillipians were: 

1. Partnered through Prayer

Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance

Philippians 1:19

The prayers of God’s people are active in petitioning God to move on behalf of His glory among the nations.  Since God is all powerful, by supporting through prayer we partner in missional advance in the most powerful way possible. You should build regular rhythms of corporately praying strategic prayers for gospel advance among your missionary partner’s work. This is as simple as setting aside ten minutes each week in your adult small groups and having a volunteer gather the strategic needs from you missionaries.  Pray for one to two of your partners each week on a rotation (see also John 14:12-14).

2. Partnered through Physical Visits

I have thought it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, and your messenger and minister to my need

Philippians 2:25

Through physical trips we can encourage and build up our sent ones that they might persevere in the good work that our Lord has called them to.  We can strengthen them spiritually and enter into the work through directly engaging in the work alongside our sent ones. 

3. Partnered through sharing resources

Even in Thessalonica you sent me help for my needs once and again

Philippians 4:16

We can partner with missionaries through direct giving of finances and resources. Each year through regular giving the church should set aside resources to spur on evangelism, church planting, and church revitalization in North America and internationally.  Partner in a measured and specific way with those that have been sent as elder qualified or join a work in a team member status from your church.  Weight your partnership heavier to people or regions that have the most spiritual need. 

As we model our partnership with others from scripture we ought to lead our churches to partner through prayer, physical visits, and sharing our resources. As we plant and water may God give the increase.