Priscilla is a woman mentioned several times in the New Testament along with her husband Aquila. As we study her life, there are many great lessons we can apply to our own lives today. Here are some key takeaways from the life of Priscilla:
- Priscilla was hospitable and opened her home to ministry
- She faithfully assisted those in ministry alongside her husband
- Priscilla was knowledgeable about Scripture and theology
- She helped instruct and disciple other believers
- Priscilla used her influence and resources to advance the gospel
In the pages of Scripture, we find many examples of godly men and women that we can learn from. One woman that often gets overlooked is Priscilla, the wife of Aquila. Priscilla and Aquila are mentioned six times in the New Testament (Acts 18:2, 18, 26; Romans 16:3; 1 Corinthians 16:19; 2 Timothy 4:19), and we see them continually assisting the apostle Paul in his missionary work.
Though Priscilla lived almost 2,000 years ago, her life and ministry provide an example that we can still follow today. As we examine Priscilla’s story, we see characteristics such as hospitality, service, theological knowledge, discipleship, and advancing the gospel. Priscilla allowed God to use her mightily alongside her husband, and her impact is still felt today.
In this blog post, we will dive deeper into the life of Priscilla and discover key lessons that we as Christians can apply in our current day. Priscilla’s devotion to Christ provides us with an inspirational model of what it means to live all out for God’s kingdom purposes. Join me as we explore 10 powerful lessons from the life of this remarkable woman of faith!
- Priscilla Was Hospitable and Opened Her Home to Ministry
- She Faithfully Assisted Those in Ministry Alongside Her Husband
- Priscilla Was Knowledgeable about Scripture and Theology
- She Helped Instruct and Disciple Other Believers
- Priscilla Used Her Influence and Resources to Advance the Gospel
Priscilla Was Hospitable and Opened Her Home to Ministry
One of the first things we learn about Priscilla and Aquila is their hospitality. When Paul came to Corinth, he stayed with them and worked together as tentmakers (Acts 18:2-3). This couple generously opened up their home to Paul, providing him lodging and employment during his ministry in the city.
In ancient cultures, hospitality was a prized virtue and a practical way of caring for traveling preachers and evangelists. Priscilla and Aquila embodied this value by welcoming Paul into their lives and creating space for his ministry. They likely had Paul live with them for 18 months, an incredible commitment to hospitality!
Even later on when they moved to Ephesus and then to Rome, Priscilla and Aquila continued to open their home for the local church. Both of Paul’s letters to the Corinthians mention the church meeting in their house (1 Cor. 16:19; Rom. 16:3-5). This couple saw their living space as an opportunity to serve Christ’s body.
As believers today, we too can follow Priscilla’s example by being hospitable and extending radical generosity to those in ministry. When we open our homes and lives to further the gospel, God uses our hospitality in powerful ways, just as He did with Priscilla’s home.
She Faithfully Assisted Those in Ministry Alongside Her Husband
In addition to providing hospitality, Priscilla also joined in assisting those ministering God’s Word. When Apollos came to Ephesus, Luke tells us that Priscilla and Aquila “took him aside and explained the way of God to him more accurately” (Acts 18:26). Apollos was an enthusiastic preacher, but he only knew of the baptism of John. So this couple invested in his growth by teaching him more thoroughly.
What stands out here is that Priscilla instructed Apollos right alongside her husband Aquila. In this culture, it was highly countercultural for a woman to be directly involved in theological teaching. Yet Luke praises Priscilla for boldly taking part in this mentoring.
We also see Priscilla’s partnership with Aquila in the closing greetings of Paul’s letters. For example, Paul refers to them as “Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 16:3). As a team, this couple devoted themselves to serving alongside Paul in advancing the gospel.
Priscilla’s eager participation in ministry challenges us to likewise pursue ways to assist those preaching God’s Word. Her assistance was invaluable to Paul’s missionary efforts. We too can come alongside ministry leaders, missionaries, and pastors by offering our help, partnership, encouragement, and support.
Priscilla Was Knowledgeable about Scripture and Theology
For Priscilla to instruct someone as educated as Apollos, she clearly possessed substantial biblical and theological knowledge. Priscilla grasped Scripture and doctrine well enough to teach Apollos the way of God “more accurately” (Acts 18:26). This indicates an impressive level of spiritual maturity and understanding.
In ancient times, women were rarely taught the Scriptures in-depth. Yet Priscilla’s parents and teachers obviously invested in her education and training. She learned how to study God’s Word, analyze its meaning, and synthesize its theology. Her competent handling of Scripture is exemplary.
Like Priscilla, we should aspire to be students of God’s Word who handle Scripture accurately and intelligently. Diligently studying the Bible takes hard work and discipline, but it equips us to correctly teach others as Priscilla did. Knowledge of Scripture is too valuable not to pursue wholeheartedly.
She Helped Instruct and Disciple Other Believers
Priscilla’s encounter with Apollos displays her instructive role in the early church. When Apollos’ content was lacking, Priscilla stepped up to fill the gap in his understanding. She possessed both the confidence and ability to help disciple this passionate preacher toward greater maturity.
This example indicates that Priscilla likely invested in discipling other believers as well, especially younger women in the faith. Her competent knowledge of theology equipped her to nurture spiritual growth in others through teaching and mentoring.
Like Priscilla, God may be calling us to come alongside younger or less mature believers to help instruct them in God’s truth. Whether through one-on-one discipleship, small groups, or Sunday School classes, we can play a pivotal role in nurturing spiritual growth and biblical understanding. Priscilla affirms that discipling others is a high calling.
Priscilla Used Her Influence and Resources to Advance the Gospel
As an early believer with a comfortable household, Priscilla used all she had to advance the gospel. Opening her home was just one way she supported kingdom work. Paul’s greeting in Romans 16 indicates she repeatedly “risked their lives” for his sake (Rom. 16:4). Priscilla and Aquila were all in for Christ’s mission.
This couple also helped provide financial support for Paul’s missionary travels. After initially meeting in Corinth, they likely aided Paul financially on his trip to Syria (Acts 18:18). Years later in Ephesus, they again send their greetings through Paul’s gift to the Jerusalem church (Rom. 15:26; 1 Cor. 16:1-4).
Their generosity freed Paul up financially to keep preaching the gospel across the Roman Empire. Like many early believers, they gave sacrificially to fund the work of missions.
Likewise, we can use our resources – financial, social, and personal – to generously support spreading the gospel. Whether through missions giving, volunteering, or leveraging our network, we all have a role to play in resourcing kingdom work. Priscilla provides a powerful example of stewarding our influence for God’s glory.
The life of Priscilla provides us with an inspirational model of what it means to serve Christ wholeheartedly with our gifts, resources, and opportunities. Though only briefly mentioned in Acts and the Epistles, Priscilla lived a life devoted to God’s glory and advancing the gospel.
Today, we can still learn much from Priscilla’s passionate faith and steadfast commitment to God’s kingdom purposes. May we aspire to emulate her hospitality, service, biblical knowledge, discipleship, and generosity for the sake of Christ’s mission in our world. Priscilla inspires us to not sit on the sidelines but fully participate in the work God is doing through His people.