12 Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa, who have labored in the Lord. Greet the beloved Persis, who labored much in the Lord.
12 Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa,
Tryphena and Tryphosa are female names. Paul addressed them jointly for some reason. They were likely sisters. Both were common names in the first century. Tryphena means dainty and Tryphosa means delicate. It is interesting that these women with feminine names labored hard for the Lord.
who have labored in the Lord.
Paul used the present tense for “labored,” so these women were still working for the Lord at the time Paul wrote Romans. In this section he indicated that four women labored for the Lord (Mary, Tryphena, Tryphosa, Persis). It is interesting that here Paul mentioned only women who labored hard, not men.
Greet the beloved Persis [name meaning a woman from Persia],
Here is another woman Paul loved. She was “the beloved,” not “my beloved.” The idea is that the Roman church regarded her very highly. Persis was a slave name.
who labored much in the Lord.
“Labored” here is in the past tense and means to labor hard to the point of weakness. Persis’s hard work gave her distinction in the Roman church. Paul gave no reason for why Persis worked harder than Tryphena and Tryphosa, but he simply stated that she labored to the point of exhaustion.
The local church needs women.
Paul recognized the contribution women make to the local church. Any pastor knows this as well. Thank God for women who advance the cause of Christ in the local church.