(E·paph·ro·diʹtus) [from a root meaning “foam up”].
A trustworthy member of the congregation at Philippi, Macedonia, who was sent with a gift to Paul, then a prisoner at Rome (c. 59-61 C.E.). (Php 2:25; 4:18) While in Rome, Epaphroditus “fell sick nearly to the point of death; but God had mercy on him.” News of his sickness reached the Philippians and they, perhaps, anxiously made inquiry. Since Epaphroditus was longing to see the Philippians and was distressed that they had learned about his illness, Paul considered it advisable to send Epaphroditus back quickly upon his recovery and entrusted him with his letter to the Philippian congregation. Paul encouraged the brothers to give Epaphroditus “the customary welcome in the Lord” and to “keep holding men of that sort dear.” For it had been on account of the Lord’s work that Epaphroditus had exposed himself to danger, coming quite near to death. (Php 2:25-30) Epaphroditus is not to be confused with the Epaphras from Colossae.