SGA 13th. Street Baptist Church I Philippians Lesson 1


Lesson 1
Philippians 1:1-11

E-Mail - Henry Mahan

Introduction. Philippi was a Roman colony and the chief city of Macedonia. Paul had received special instructions to go there (Acts 16:9-12). Lydia and the jailer (as well as others) were converted, forming the church at Philippi.

Paul was in prison at Rome when he wrote this epistle. He mentions his chains, Caesar's palace and some of Caesar's household sending their greetings to the church.

Paul was especially dear to these Philippians. He was the preacher who had brought them the gospel. Upon hearing that he was a prisoner in Rome, they sent their minister, Epaphroditus, to him with presents and good wishes. He sent this epistle back to them by their minister.

(Vs. 1.) Paul, though the sole writer of this epistle, includes Timothy in his salutation for several reasons.

"To all the saints, bishops and deacons at Philippi." Every believer is a saint, consecrated and sanctified in Christ. The bishops are the pastors and elders, concerned mainly with the spiritual state of the members. The deacons (along with the spiritual concern) are the servants of the church, who serve the Lord's Table, the tables of the poor and the secular affairs of the church.

(Vs. 2-5.) This is a prayer of thanksgiving and petition.

May he by whose kind grace we meet,
Send his great Spirit from above,
Make our communications sweet,
And cause our hearts to burn with love.

(Vs. 6.) Paul's thanksgiving and joy on behalf of this church sprang from the confidence and persuasion that the work of grace which God had begun in them would result in their eternal glorification with Christ.

(Vs. 7,8.) Paul further justifies his confidence in regard to these people on the basis of two other reasons: Firstly, God kept them on Paul's heart continually, and, secondly, they stood by him in love and defence of the gospel.

"It is right and appropriate for me to have this confidence and feel this way about you all, because even as you do me, I hold you in my heart as partakers and sharers, one and all with me, of grace. This is true when I am shut up in prison and when I am out in the field – for God is my witness how I long for and pursue you all with love" (Amplified Version).

(Vs.9-11.) Paul again prays for them.

Henry Mahan is pastor of
Thirteenth Street Baptist Church
Ashland, Ky.