Ministry Couples: Romans 16:3-5
“3) Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus, 4) who for my life risked their own necks, to whom not only do I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles; 4) also greet the church that is in their house. Greet Epaenetus, my beloved, who is the first convert to Christ from Asia.” Romans‬ ‭16:3-5‬ ‭
Paul now sends a greeting to his beloved Prisca and Aquila. They were the tent making couple that he worked with for a while when he first arrived in Corinth. (SeeActs 18:2-3.) They were also the couple that reached Apollos with the gospel. (See Acts 18:24-28) For a time they travelled with Paul. As mentioned in the text, at one point they risked their own lives to save him. We have no more details of what happened.
They are the New Testament example of a ministry couple. They are always pictured as traveling and doing ministry together. At the point of Paul’s writing, they had settled in Rome and started a church in their own home. (See Romans 16:4) They are a biblical example of a marriage ministry team.
As you can guess, I am a strong believer in married couples doing ministry together. For years my wife put on children’s ministries as we travel across the United States conducting church renewals. I would preach to the adults while she took the children and put on a dynamite children’s ministry.
As our children aged, they participated in the ministry. They learned ministry by joining us in ministry together as a family. My daughter Bethany was my International ministry partner for years. She started in that role at age 14 and has even joined me as a presenter at pastors conferences in India. Doing ministry is more caught than taught.
The concept of a family ministry team removes some of the issues associated with woman in ministry. It looks like Phillip the evangelist believed in family ministry. It appears that his four daughters had a prophecy ministry in the early church under his authority umbrella. (See Acts 21:8-9) Admittedly, the biblical description is very small and sketchy and therefore subject to mere speculation.
The bottom line is that God calls and anoints married couples and even families for fruitful ministry. This model was not missed by the early church, especially in front lines mission work.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global