THE EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS.

THE STRUCTURE AS A WHOLE.
A  1:1,2. Epistolary, and Salutation. "Grace" to Them.
 B  1:3-26. Paul's Solicitude for the Philippians.
  C  1:27-2;18. Exhortation, and Example of Christ.
   D  2:19-24. The Example of Timothy.
   D  2:25-30. The Example of Epaphroditus.
  C  3:1-4:9. Exhortation, and Example of Paul.
 B  4:10-20. The Philippian's Solicitude for Paul.
A  4:21-23. Epistolary, and Doxology. "Grace" to Them.

Introductory notes.

   1. The apostle's 1st visit to the city of Philippi, probably about 52-53 A.D., is recorded in Acts 16. He had as companions Silas and Timothy, and the use of the 1st personal pronoun, in v.10 of that chapter, indicates that a 4th worker was with him. Probably Luke, the;beloved physician'. Although we have no particulars of later visits, yet Paul almost certainly was twice at Philippi subsequently [Acts 20:1 and 6].

   2. We infer that but few of the tribe of Judah would be at Philippi, there being no intimation of obstruction from them, and there was no synagogue there, unless, indeed, the "place of prayer" by the river-side refers to one. The believers had retained the fervency of their 1st love, and had sent once and again to his need. The apostle's gratitude is shown repeatedly, and he greatly honors his Philippian "brethren, dearly beloved and longed for", by designating them "my joy and crown".

   3. No one of Paul's Epistles is more elevated in character or more animating to believers. Nor, it may be added, one of better-defined frame, as will be seen from the complete Structure [above]. Written from Rome towards the end of his imprisonment, probably 62 A.D., the apostle's position was then one of waiting, for he was now close to the day for his cause to be heard before the tribunal to which he had appealed. And most likely this necessitated a more rigid condition of imprisonment than when he dwelt, as at first, in his own hired house. But this, instead of hindering, had even furthered the preaching of Christ. Hence one cause for the tone of rejoicing throughout the Epistle. Like golden threads, "joy", and its kindred word run throughout Philippians, as "grace" does in Ephesians.

   4. The city of Philippi, a Roman colony, was situated about 8 miles inland from its port, Neapolis, the modern Kavalla. Not being a commercial center, this may explain the paucity of the Judeans among the inhabitants. Philippi no longer exists, for although the nearest Turkish hamlet bears the ancient name in a corrupted form, it is not on the site of the old city.

THE EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE

TO THE

PHILIPPIANS.

Philippians 1)

1 Paul and Timothy (see 2 Cor. 1:1), the servants of Jesus (Gr. Iesous, Heb. Yahshua = Yahaveh's Savior) Christ (Gr. Christos = the Anointed One, i.e. the Messiah), to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops (Gr. episkopos. See Acts 20:28) and deacons (Gr. Diakonos. The only place where these officers are mentioned together.):
2 Grace be to you, and peace, from God (Gr. Theos, Heb. equivalent to Elohim) our Father (Gr. Pater, it denotes His relationship to His "beloved Son"), and from the Lord (Gr. Kurios, Heb. equivalent to Yahaveh) Jesus Christ.

1:3-26. PAUL'S CONCERN FOR THE PHILIPPIANS.
B  A  3-5. Thanksgiving.
    B  6,7. Confidence with reference to the Philippians.
   A  8-11. Prayer. 
    B  12-26. Confidence with reference to himself.

3 I thank my God (see Acts 27:35) upon every remembrance of you,
4 Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,
5 For your fellowship in the good news (or glad tidings) from the first day until now;

6 Being confident (Lit. trusting) of this very thing, that He Which has begun a good work in you will complete (see Luke 13:32) it until the day of Jesus Christ:
7 Even as it just (or right) for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defense (see Acts 22:1) and confirmation (Gr. bebaitosis. A legal term for guarantee) of the good news, you all are fellow-partakers (see Rom. 11:17) with me of grace. (A bond which unites all who receive it.)

8 For God is my witness, how greatly I long (see Rom. 1:11) after you all in the bowels (put for inward affection and tender mercy. See 2 Cor. 6:12) of Christ Jesus.
9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; (As your knowledge increases, you are better able to discern good from evil. Don't let anyone make a fool of you. Increase your knowledge of the Word. That is how you distinguish truth from falsehood.)
10 To your proving (or trying) things that differ; (We are to test the things, and having found them to differ, must not join them together, but rightly divide them [2 Pet. 2:15].) that you may be sincere and without offense (see Acts 24:16) till the day of Christ. (The 1st day of the Millennium. See 1 Cor. 1:8; 5;5. 2 Cor. 1:14. 2 Thess. 2:2. The word "sincere" in this verse is "eilikrenes" [i-lik-ree-nace], and means "judged by sunlight". Open things up and let the sun shine in. Make judgment on what you know as fact. If you do otherwise, you will be like a reed shaken in the wind.)
11 Having been filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

1:12-26. CONFIDENCE WITH REFERENCE TO HIMSELF.
B  a  12,13. What Paul would have them know.
    b  14-18-. Christ preached.
     c  -18. Paul's rejoicing.
   a  19. What Paul knew.
    b  20-25. Christ magnified.
     c  26. Their rejoicing.

12 But I wish you to understand, brethren, that the things with reference to me have fallen out (lit. come) rather to the furtherance of the good news; (They threw in prison for teaching Christ. Do you think that bothered Paul? Not one little bit. He knew the significance of letting what he taught be judged by sunlight.)
13 So that my bonds in relation to Christ (i.e. that my being a prisoner is not on account of any crime, but solely for preaching the good news) have become manifest in all the palace (Cp. Matt. 27;27 and see Acts 28:30.), and to all the rest; (I.e. to the civilian population. It was well known that Paul was in prison for teaching Christ, not for murder or theft.)

14 And the majority of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word of God without fear. (If you are willing to let what you say be judged by sunlight, you have nothing to fear. Be bold. Right always wins. Your heavenly Father sees to that.)
15 Some indeed preach (= to proclaim) Christ even through envy and strife; and some of good will also:
16 The one preach (= to bring to word down to any one, bring it home by setting it forth) Christ of contention, not of pure motive, thinking to add affliction to my bonds: (Don't preach Christ of envy, strife or contention. We have one enemy, even Satan. That enemy dearly loves to see the brethren beating up on each other. Teach the Word in god will to the edification of your brethren.)
17 But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defense of the good news. (Those who were teaching Christ of love knew Paul was in prison for teaching the gospel in truth.)
18 What shall we say then? Nothing, except that, every way, whether in pretense (see John 15:22), or in truth, Christ is preached;

and I in this do rejoice (no personal consideration prevented his rejoicing), yes, and will rejoice. (Paul knew and was happy that God would reach the elect with the truth, whereby they could claim the promises of God's Word. It didn't matter that some criticized him. He was willing to open up what He was teaching and to be judged by sunlight. You do the same.)

19 For I know that this shall turn out to me for salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, (Cp. Rom. 8:9. It was this that enabled Paul to suffer no personal considerations to weigh with him. He had the mind of Christ. Cp. 2:5. 1 Cor. 2;16.)

20 According to my earnest expectation (see Rom. 8;19) and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed (see 2 Cor. 10:8), but that with all boldness (see John 7;4), as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death. (Paul is looking to the future, using his head and thinking with all certainty about his salvation through Jesus Christ. Earnest expectation is what makes Christianity a reality.)
21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. (Not to Paul, but to Christ, as is clear from v.20. To Paul, life and death were of no account so long as the cause of Christ was advanced. His bonds had furthered the good news, what might not his death do?. Cp. 2:17. 2 Cor. 7:3. Now we have to be very careful in dealing with this scripture because every once in a while you get some person that thinks in flesh too much, rather than the spirit, and they say, ďWell if itís better, Iím tired of this old earth, so I think Iíll just end it.Ē Well then, now youíre a murderer and youíre going to hell for sure. Because when you kill yourself, you murder one of Godís children. When Paul says that itís better, itís gain, itís positive, itís profitable, that heís strictly speaking in a spiritual sense. And if youíre a Christian thatís what all Christians truly believe. As a matter of fact, isnít that what you work for is an eternity with Him and happiness and no pain? We have a Father, for your inheritance, we have a Father that owns everything and youíre His child. And you inherit the world right along with Him. What a beautiful thing)
22 But if I live in the flesh, this (i.e. gain to Christ) is the fruit of my labor (In other words, if by living if I own, if I can bear fruit, in other word, through my ministry of teaching and converting people and teaching them the actual and true Word of God, it produces fruit for me, and of course Paul always had a great compassion for people): yet what I shall choose I declare not. (Paul knew that it is better to be with Christ after we are finished with these flesh bodies. His will was surrendered to God, so he had no choice as to life or death for himself, but there was something he earnestly desired. What he is saying is, it's like when it comes to your mind something like ďIf I had my choice at this timeÖĒ, which he didnít, thatís all in Godís hands, but if he had a way of saying, ďI chooseĒ, he would know which way he would choose because he loved teaching the gospel, but he was really looking forward to being home. Which indicates what to you? To be absent from this body is to be where? Home, ďgainĒ.)
23 For I am being pressed out of the two (i.e. living and dying), having the desire for the return, and to be with Christ (Now what did that say? ďIf I departĒ, meaning ďIf I dieĒ, Iím going to be with Christ. See that Paul teaches that no soul sleeps. No sleeping in the ground. Only the body goes there and the spirit, the soul, the person, goes to the Father, to Jesus); for it is far better: (Better than what? Clearly than either of the 2 above. I think that makes that point pretty well. Paul did not teach that your loved ones are out in hole in the ground. We would have a God then, of death. But we do not serve a God of the dead, we serve a God the living. And all souls, not even Satanís soul, has been destroyed, not even unto this day, and heís the wickedest of them all. But he is in holding by Michael and His angels until it is time for him to finish those things that God will allow him, or rather order him, to do. See Luke 23:42.)
24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful on account of you. (We are here in the flesh for a reason. Always serve God, until you have accomplished the work He has established for you here on earth.)
25 And having confidence of this, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of the faith;

26 That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Christ Jesus in me by my coming to you again.

1:27-2:18. EXHORTATION AND EXAMPLE OF CHRIST.
C  C  1:27-2:4. Exhortation.
    D  2:5-8. Christ's Humiliation.
    D  2:9-11. Christ's Exhalation.
   C  2:12-18. Exhortation.

27 Only exercise your citizenship (in all cases it means to live according to certain rules and obligations, i.e. those those of heavenly citizenship [cp. 3:20]) worthy the good news of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear the things concerning you, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith (i.e. the substance of things believed) of the gospel;
28 And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of destruction, but to you of salvation (cp. Heb. 11:7), and that of God. (Make certain your conversation aligns with the gospel of Christ. There is absolutely nothing for you to fear in your enemies. Christ gave you power over all of your enemies. If they don't change their ways, it is their lot to perish, but you have the salvation of God.)
29 For to you it was granted in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but to suffer for His sake also; (Cp. Acts 9:16. Christ was afflicted; Christians will be afflicted. The world doesn't particularly care for us. We are in a spiritual war, and there will be suffering.)
30 Having the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear to be in me. (See Acts 16:19-24. 1 Thess. 2:2.)

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