"Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong." (1 Corinthians 16:13 NIV)
St. Paul sends these words of encouragement to the Church at Corinth after informing them that Apollos was not willing to visit them at that time – but that he would go when the opportunity arises. The advice to remain on guard, firm in the faith, courageous, and strong is followed by “Do everything in love” (v. 14). He also reminds them that Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus were available for their guidance and leadership – and they should be recognized for their service and authority.
Applying this to my current situation – while we (my professor and I) are separated by three-fourths of a continent, we are only seconds apart by the Internet! Oh, what St. Paul would have done had he been around in this day and age! Though geographically separated, I do not feel apart from you. I respect your guidance and leadership as we walk through this journey.
On a side-note – I was in a discussion with our piano tuner (wife plays, not me!) and he spoke of a conspiracy theory that the entire New Testament was originally in Aramaic. I had not heard that before. I had heard of the likelihood that the Gospel of Matthew was originally in Aramaic since it was primarily directed at the Jews, and we have Irenaeus of Lyons who wrote circa 180 AD “Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews in their own dialect” (Against Heresies, 3:1:1). I bring this up because St. Paul, in his conclusion to this letter uses the phrase “Maranatha” – often left untranslated (see KJV, NASB, DRA, NAB, and others) which is Aramaic! Very interesting!