Philippians 4 (TBRM Day 713)

Philippians 4 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

VI. Instructions for the Community[a]

Chapter 4

Live in Concord. Therefore, my brothers, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, in this way stand firm in the Lord, beloved.

I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche[b] to come to a mutual understanding in the Lord. Yes, and I ask you also, my true yokemate,[c] to help them, for they have struggled at my side in promoting the gospel, along with Clement and my other co-workers, whose names are in the book of life.

Joy and Peace. Rejoice[d] in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! Your kindness[e] should be known to all. The Lord is near. Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.[f] Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you.[g]

VII. Gratitude for the Philippians’ Generosity[h]

10 I rejoice greatly in the Lord that now at last you revived your concern for me. You were, of course, concerned about me but lacked an opportunity. 11 Not that I say this because of need, for I have learned, in whatever situation I find myself, to be self-sufficient. 12 I know indeed how to live in humble circumstances; I know also how to live with abundance. In every circumstance and in all things I have learned the secret of being well fed and of going hungry, of living in abundance and of being in need. 13 I have the strength for everything through him who empowers me. 14 Still, it was kind of you to share in my distress.

15 You Philippians indeed know that at the beginning of the gospel,[i]when I left Macedonia, not a single church shared with me in an account of giving and receiving, except you alone. 16 For even when I was at Thessalonica you sent me something for my needs, not only once but more than once. 17 It is not that I am eager for the gift; rather, I am eager for the profit that accrues to your account. 18 I have received full payment and I abound. I am very well supplied because of what I received from you through Epaphroditus, “a fragrant aroma,” an acceptable sacrifice,[j] pleasing to God. 19 My God will fully supply whatever you need, in accord with his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.20 To our God and Father, glory forever and ever. Amen.

VIII. Farewell[k]

21 Give my greetings to every holy one in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me send you their greetings; 22 all the holy ones send you their greetings, especially those of Caesar’s household.[l] 23 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

Footnotes:

  1. 4:1–9 This series of ethical admonitions rests especially on the view of Christ and his coming (cf. Phil 4:5) in Phil 3:20–21. Paul’s instructions touch on unity within the congregation, joy, prayer, and the Christian outlook on life.
  2. 4:2 Euodia…Syntyche: two otherwise unknown women in the Philippian congregation; on the advice to them, cf. Phil 2:2–4.
  3. 4:3 Yokemate: or “comrade,” although the Greek syzygos could also be a proper name. Clement: otherwise unknown, although later writers sought to identify him with Clement, bishop of Rome (Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History 3.15.1).
  4. 4:4 Rejoice: see note on Phil 3:1.
  5. 4:5 Kindness: considerateness, forbearance, fairness. The Lord is near: most likely a reference to Christ’s parousia (Phil 1:6, 10; 3:20–21; 1 Cor 16:22), although some sense an echo of Ps 119:151 and the perpetual presence of the Lord.
  6. 4:8 The language employs terms from Roman Stoic thought.
  7. 4:9 Cf. note on Phil 3:17.
  8. 4:10–20 Paul, more directly than anywhere else in the letter (cf. Phil 1:3–5), here thanks the Philippians for their gift of money sent through Epaphroditus (Phil 2:25). Paul’s own policy was to be self-sufficient as a missionary, supporting himself by his own labor (1 Thes 2:5–9; 1 Cor 9:15–18; cf. Acts 18:2–3). In spite of this reliance on self and on God to provide (Phil 4:11–13) Paul accepted gifts from the Philippians not only once but more than once (Phil 4:16) when he was in Thessalonica (Acts 17:1–9), as he does now, in prison (my distress, Phil 4:14). While commercial terms appear in the passage, like an account of giving and receiving (Phil 4:15) and received full payment (Phil 4:18), Paul is most concerned about the spiritual growth of the Philippians (Phil 4:10, 17, 19); he emphasizes that God will care for their needs, through Christ.
  9. 4:15 The beginning of the gospel: it was at Philippi that Paul first preached Christ in Europe, going on from there to Thessalonica and Beroea (Acts 16:9–17:14).
  10. 4:18 Aroma…sacrifice: Old Testament cultic language (cf. Gn 8:21; Ex 29:18, 25, 41; Lv 1:9, 13; Ez 20:41) applied to the Philippians’ gift; cf. Eph 5:2; 2 Cor 2:14–16.
  11. 4:21–23 On the usual greetings at the conclusion of a letter, see note on 1 Cor 16:19–24. Inclusion of greetings from all the holy ones in the place from which Paul writes would involve even the Christians of Phil 1:14–18 who had their differences with Paul.
  12. 4:22 Those of Caesar’s household: minor officials or even slaves and freedmen, found in Ephesus or Rome, among other places.
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Philippians 3 (TBRM Day 712)

Philippians 3 (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 712)

The True Righteousness
3 In conclusion, my friends, be joyful in your union with the Lord. I don’t mind repeating what I have written before, and you will be safer if I do so. 2 Watch out for those who do evil things, those dogs, those who insist on cutting the body. 3 It is we, not they, who have received the true circumcision, for we worship God by means of his Spirit and rejoice in our life in union with Christ Jesus. We do not put any trust in external ceremonies. 4 I could, of course, put my trust in such things. If any of you think you can trust in external ceremonies, I have even more reason to feel that way. 5 I was circumcised when I was a week old. I am an Israelite by birth, of the tribe of Benjamin, a pure-blooded Hebrew. As far as keeping the Jewish Law is concerned, I was a Pharisee, 6 and I was so zealous that I persecuted the church. As far as a person can be righteous by obeying the commands of the Law, I was without fault. 7 But all those things that I might count as profit I now reckon as loss for Christ’s sake. 8 Not only those things; I reckon everything as complete loss for the sake of what is so much more valuable, the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have thrown everything away; I consider it all as mere garbage, so that I may gain Christ 9 and be completely united with him. I no longer have a righteousness of my own, the kind that is gained by obeying the Law. I now have the righteousness that is given through faith in Christ, the righteousness that comes from God and is based on faith. 10 All I want is to know Christ and to experience the power of his resurrection, to share in his sufferings and become like him in his death, 11 in the hope that I myself will be raised from death to life.

Running toward the Goal
12 I do not claim that I have already succeeded or have already become perfect. I keep striving to win the prize for which Christ Jesus has already won me to himself. 13 Of course, my friends, I really do not[a]think that I have already won it; the one thing I do, however, is to forget what is behind me and do my best to reach what is ahead. 14 So I run straight toward the goal in order to win the prize, which is God’s call through Christ Jesus to the life above.

15 All of us who are spiritually mature should have this same attitude. But if some of you have a different attitude, God will make this clear to you. 16 However that may be, let us go forward according to the same rules we have followed until now.

17 Keep on imitating me, my friends. Pay attention to those who follow the right example that we have set for you. 18 I have told you this many times before, and now I repeat it with tears: there are many whose lives make them enemies of Christ’s death on the cross. 19 They are going to end up in hell, because their god is their bodily desires. They are proud of what they should be ashamed of, and they think only of things that belong to this world. 20 We, however, are citizens of heaven, and we eagerly wait for our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, to come from heaven. 21 He will change our weak mortal bodies and make them like his own glorious body, using that power by which he is able to bring all things under his rule.

Footnotes:
Philippians 3:13 not; some manuscripts have not yet.

Philippians 2 (TBRM Day 711)

Philippians 2 Good News Translation (GNT)

Christ’s Humility and Greatness

Your life in Christ makes you strong, and his love comforts you. You have fellowship with the Spirit,[a] and you have kindness and compassion for one another. I urge you, then, to make me completely happy by having the same thoughts, sharing the same love, and being one in soul and mind. Don’t do anything from selfish ambition or from a cheap desire to boast, but be humble toward one another, always considering others better than yourselves. And look out for one another’s interests, not just for your own. The attitude you should have is the one that Christ Jesus had:

He always had the nature of God,
    but he did not think that by force he should try to remain[b]equal with God.
Instead of this, of his own free will he gave up all he had,
    and took the nature of a servant.
He became like a human being
    and appeared in human likeness.
He was humble and walked the path of obedience all the way to death—
    his death on the cross.
For this reason God raised him to the highest place above
    and gave him the name that is greater than any other name.
10 And so, in honor of the name of Jesus
    all beings in heaven, on earth, and in the world below[c]
    will fall on their knees,
11 and all will openly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

Shining as Lights in the World

12 So then, dear friends, as you always obeyed me when I was with you, it is even more important that you obey me now while I am away from you. Keep on working with fear and trembling to complete your salvation, 13 because God is always at work in you to make you willing and able to obey his own purpose.

14 Do everything without complaining or arguing, 15 so that you may be innocent and pure as God’s perfect children, who live in a world of corrupt and sinful people. You must shine among them like stars lighting up the sky, 16 as you offer them the message of life. If you do so, I shall have reason to be proud of you on the Day of Christ, because it will show that all my effort and work have not been wasted.

17 Perhaps my life’s blood is to be poured out like an offering on the sacrifice that your faith offers to God. If that is so, I am glad and share my joy with you all. 18 In the same way, you too must be glad and share your joy with me.

Timothy and Epaphroditus

19 If it is the Lord’s will, I hope that I will be able to send Timothy to you soon, so that I may be encouraged by news about you. 20 He is the only one who shares my feelings and who really cares about you. 21 Everyone else is concerned only with their own affairs, not with the cause of Jesus Christ. 22 And you yourselves know how he has proved his worth, how he and I, like a son and his father, have worked together for the sake of the gospel. 23 So I hope to send him to you as soon as I know how things are going to turn out for me. 24 And I trust in the Lord that I myself will be able to come to you soon.

25 I have thought it necessary to send to you our brother Epaphroditus, who has worked and fought by my side and who has served as your messenger in helping me. 26 He is anxious to see you all and is very upset because you had heard that he was sick. 27 Indeed he was sick and almost died. But God had pity on him, and not only on him but on me, too, and spared me an even greater sorrow. 28 I am all the more eager, then, to send him to you, so that you will be glad again when you see him, and my own sorrow will disappear. 29 Receive him, then, with joy, as a believer in the Lord. Show respect to all such people as he, 30 because he risked his life and nearly died for the sake of the work of Christ, in order to give me the help that you yourselves could not give.

Footnotes:

  1. Philippians 2:1 You have fellowship with the Spirit; or The Spirit has brought you into fellowship with one another.
  2. Philippians 2:6 remain; or become.
  3. Philippians 2:10 It was thought that the dead continued to exist in a dark world under the ground.

Philippians 1 (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 710)

Philippians 1 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

I. Address

Chapter 1

Greeting.[a] Paul and Timothy, slaves[b] of Christ Jesus, to all the holy ones in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, with the overseers and ministers: grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.[c]

Thanksgiving.[d] I give thanks to my God at every remembrance of you, praying always with joy in my every prayer for all of you, because of your partnership for the gospel from the first day until now. I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work in you will continue to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus.[e] It is right that I should think this way about all of you, because I hold you in my heart, you who are all partners with me in grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel. For God is my witness, how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus. And this is my prayer: that your love may increase ever more and more in knowledge and every kind of perception, 10 to discern what is of value, so that you may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.

II. Progress of the Gospel[f]

12 I want you to know, brothers, that my situation has turned out rather to advance the gospel, 13 so that my imprisonment has become well known in Christ throughout the whole praetorium[g] and to all the rest,14 [h]and so that the majority of the brothers, having taken encouragement in the Lord from my imprisonment, dare more than ever to proclaim the word fearlessly.

15 Of course, some preach Christ from envy and rivalry, others from good will. 16 The latter act out of love, aware that I am here for the defense of the gospel; 17 the former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, not from pure motives, thinking that they will cause me trouble in my imprisonment. 18 What difference does it make, as long as in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is being proclaimed? And in that I rejoice.[i]

Indeed I shall continue to rejoice, 19 [j]for I know that this will result in deliverance for me[k] through your prayers and support from the Spirit of Jesus Christ. 20 My eager expectation and hope is that I shall not be put to shame in any way, but that with all boldness, now as always, Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me life is Christ, and death is gain. 22 If I go on living in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. And I do not know which I shall choose. 23 I am caught between the two. I long to depart this life and be with Christ, [for] that is far better. 24 Yet that I remain [in] the flesh is more necessary for your benefit. 25 And this I know with confidence, that I shall remain and continue in the service of all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that your boasting in Christ Jesus may abound on account of me when I come to you again.

III. Instructions for the Community

Steadfastness in Faith.[l] 27 Only, conduct yourselves in a way worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that, whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear news of you, that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind struggling together for the faith of the gospel, 28 not intimidated in any way by your opponents. This is proof to them of destruction, but of your salvation. And this is God’s doing. 29 For to you has been granted, for the sake of Christ, not only to believe in him but also to suffer for him. 30 Yours is the same struggle as you saw in me and now hear about me.[m]

Footnotes:

  1. 1:1–2 See note on Rom 1:1–7, concerning the greeting.
  2. 1:1 Slaves: Paul usually refers to himself at the start of a letter as an apostle. Here he substitutes a term suggesting the unconditional obligation of himself and Timothy to the service of Christ, probably because, in view of the good relationship with the Philippians, he wishes to stress his status as a co-servant rather than emphasize his apostolic authority. Reference to Timothy is a courtesy: Paul alone writes the letter, as the singular verb throughout shows (Phil 1:3–26), and the reference (Phil 2:19–24) to Timothy in the third person. Overseers: the Greek term episkopos literally means “one who oversees” or “one who supervises,” but since the second century it has come to designate the “bishop,” the official who heads a local church. In New Testament times this office had not yet developed into the form that it later assumed, though it seems to be well on the way to such development in the Pastorals; see 1 Tm 3:2 and Ti 1:7, where it is translated bishop. At Philippi, however (and at Ephesus, according to Acts 20:28), there was more than one episkopos, and the precise function of these officials is uncertain. In order to distinguish this office from the later stages into which it developed, the term is here translated as overseers. Ministers: the Greek term diakonoi is used frequently in the New Testament to designate “servants,” “attendants,” or “ministers.” Paul refers to himself and to other apostles as “ministers of God” (2 Cor 6:4) or “ministers of Christ” (2 Cor 11:23). In the Pastorals (1 Tm 3:8, 12) the diakonos has become an established official in the local church; hence the term is there translated as deacon. The diakonoi at Philippi seem to represent an earlier stage of development of the office; we are uncertain about their precise functions. Hence the term is here translated as ministers. See Rom 16:1, where Phoebe is described as a diakonos (minister) of the church of Cenchreae.
  3. 1:2 The gifts come from Christ the Lord, not simply through him from the Father; compare the christology in Phil 2:6–11.
  4. 1:3–11 As in Rom 1:8–15 and all the Pauline letters except Galatians, a thanksgiving follows, including a direct prayer for the Philippians (Phil 1:9–11); see note on Rom 1:8. On their partnership for the gospel (Phil 1:5), cf. Phil 1:29–30; 4:10–20. Their devotion to the faith and to Paul made them his pride and joy (Phil 4:1). The characteristics thus manifested are evidence of the community’s continuing preparation for the Lord’s parousia (Phil 1:6, 10). Paul’s especially warm relationship with the Philippians is suggested here (Phil 1:7–8) as elsewhere in the letter. The eschatology serves to underscore a concern for ethical growth (Eph 1:9–11), which appears throughout the letter.
  5. 1:6 The day of Christ Jesus: the parousia or triumphant return of Christ, when those loyal to him will be with him and share in his eternal glory; cf. Phil 1:10; 2:16; 3:20–21; 1 Thes 4:17; 5:10; 2 Thes 1:10; 1 Cor 1:8.
  6. 1:12–26 The body of the letter begins with an account of Paul’s present situation, i.e., his imprisonment (Phil 1:12–13; see Introduction), and then goes on with advice for the Philippians (Phil 1:27–2:18). The advance of the gospel (Phil 1:12) and the progress of the Philippians in the faith (Phil 1:25) frame what is said.
  7. 1:13 Praetorium: either the praetorian guard in the city where Paul was imprisoned or the governor’s official residence in a Roman province (cf. Mk 15:16; Acts 23:35). See Introduction on possible sites.
  8. 1:14–18 Although Paul is imprisoned, Christians there nonetheless go on preaching Christ. But they do so with varied motives, some with personal hostility toward Paul, others out of personal ambition.
  9. 1:18 Rejoice: a major theme in the letter; see Introduction.
  10. 1:19–25 Paul earnestly debates his prospects of martyrdom or continued missionary labor. While he may long to depart this life and thus be with Christ (Phil 1:23), his overall and final expectation is that he will be delivered from this imprisonment and continue in the service of the Philippians and of others (Phil 1:19, 25; Phil 2:24). In either case, Christ is central (Phil 1:20–21); if to live means Christ for Paul, death means to be united with Christ in a deeper sense.
  11. 1:19 Result in deliverance for me: an echo of Jb 13:16, hoping that God will turn suffering to ultimate good and deliverance from evil.
  12. 1:27–30 Ethical admonition begins at this early point in the letter, emphasizing steadfastness and congregational unity in the face of possible suffering. The opponents (Phil 1:28) are those in Philippi, probably pagans, who oppose the gospel cause. This is proof . .. (Phil 1:28) may refer to the whole outlook and conduct of the Philippians, turning out for their salvation but to the judgment of the opponents (cf. 2 Cor 2:15–16), or possibly the sentence refers to the opinion of the opponents, who hold that the obstinacy of the Christians points to the destruction of such people as defy Roman authority (though in reality, Paul holds, such faithfulness leads to salvation).
  13. 1:30 A reference to Paul’s earlier imprisonment in Philippi (Acts 16:19–24; 1 Thes 2:2) and to his present confinement.

Letter to the Philippians: Introduction (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 709)

Letter to the Philippians: Introduction (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 709)

BOOK NAME

Letter of Paul to the PHILIPPIANS or simply Philippians.
Paul and Timothy first visited Philippi in Greece during Paul’s second missionary
journey, which occurred between approximately 49 and 51 AD. Philippi was the location of
the first Christian community established in Europe.

DATE OF WRITING

The location of Paul’s imprisonment when he wrote to the Philippians, and thus the date
of the letter, are uncertain. The traditional view has been that it stems from Paul’s
confinement in Rome, between A.D. 59 and 63 (cf. Acts 28:14–31). (usccbdotorg)

BIBLE CATEGORY

The 11th Book of the New Testament.
Is a Pauline epistle and the Eleventh book of the New Testament of the Bible.
This Book of is one of the so called Captivity Epistles as it was written by Paul during imprisonment.

THE AUTHOR

Apostle Paul.

PURPOSE of Writing:

The apostle Paul did not write Philippians in response to a crisis, as he did with
Galatians and Colossians. Instead, he wrote to express his appreciation and affection for the Philippian believers. More than any other church, the believers in Philippi offered Paul material support for his ministry (2 Corinthians 8:11; Philippians 4:15–18). Paul’s affection for these people is clear throughout the letter as he encouraged them to live out their faith in joy and unity (1:3–5, 25–26; 4:1).
(source: insightdotorg)

Paul wanted:
1 to thank the Christians at Philippi for the gifts that they had sent him by
Epaphroditus.
2 to inform the Christians at Philippi about his own circumstances. He also wanted to tell them that Epaphroditus had recovered from his dangerous illness. He was returning to Philippi.
3 to appeal for unity and for the end of quarrels in the church.
4 to warn them about false doctrine, especially that of Jewish Christians who insisted on circumcision for Gentiles.
5 to urge them to remain loyal to their faith and to stand firm against opponents.
(easyenglishdotbible)

The BOOK

Philippi, in northeastern Greece, was a city of some importance in the Roman province of Macedonia. Lying on the great road from the Adriatic coast to Byzantium, the Via Egnatia, and in the midst of rich agricultural plains near the gold deposits of Mt. Pangaeus, it was in Paul’s day a Roman town (Acts 16:21), with a Greek-Macedonian population and a small group of Jews (see Acts 16:13). Originally founded in the sixth century B.C. as Krenides by the Thracians, the town was taken over after 360 B.C. by Philip II of Macedon, the father of Alexander the Great, and was renamed for himself, “Philip’s City.” The area became Roman in the second century B.C. On the plains near Philippi in October 42 B.C., Antony and Octavian decisively defeated the forces of Brutus and Cassius, the slayers of Julius Caesar. Octavian (Augustus) later made Philippi a Roman colony and settled many veterans of the Roman armies there.
Paul, according to Acts (Acts 16:9–40), established at Philippi the first Christian
community in Europe. He came to Philippi, via its harbor town of Neapolis (modern
Kavalla), on his second missionary journey, probably in A.D. 49 or 50, accompanied by Silas and Timothy (Acts 15:40; 16:3; cf. Phil 1:1) and Luke, if he is to be included in
the “we” references of Acts 16:10–17. The Acts account tells of the conversion of a
business woman, Lydia; the exorcism of a slave girl; and, after an earthquake, while Paul and Silas were imprisoned in Philippi, the faith and baptism of a jailer and his family. None of these persons, however, is directly mentioned in Philippians (cf. the notes on Phil 4:2 and Phil 4:3). Acts 16 concludes its account by describing how Paul (and Silas), asked by the magistrates to leave Philippi, went on to Thessalonica (Acts 17:1–10), where several times his loyal Philippians continued to support him with financial aid (Phil 4:16). Later, Paul may have passed through Philippi on his way from Ephesus to Greece (Acts 20:1–2), and he definitely stopped there on his fateful trip to Jerusalem (Acts 20:6).
Paul’s letter to the Christians at Philippi was written while he was in a prison
somewhere (Phil 1:7, 13, 14, 17), indeed in danger of death (Phil 1:20–23). Although
under guard for preaching Christ, Paul rejoices at the continuing progress of the gospel (Phil 1:12–26) and expresses gratitude for the Philippians’ renewed concern and help in an expression of thanks most clearly found at Phil 4:10–20. Much of the letter is devoted to instruction about unity and humility within the Christian community at Philippi (Phil 1:27–2:18) and exhortations to growth, joy, and peace in their life together (Phil 4:1–9). The letter seems to be drawing to a close at the end of what we number as Phil 2, as Paul reports the plans of his helper Timothy and of Epaphroditus (whom the Philippians had sent to aid Paul) to come to Philippi (Phil 2:19–3:1), and even Paul’s own expectation that he will go free and come to Philippi (Phil 1:25–26; 2:24). Yet quite abruptly at Phil 3:2, Paul erupts into warnings against false teachers who threaten to impose on the Philippians the burdens of the Mosaic law, including circumcision. The section that follows, Phil 3:2–21, is a vigorous attack on these Judaizers (cf. Gal 2:11–3:29) or Jewish Christian teachers (cf. 2 Cor 11:12–23), giving us insights into Paul’s own life story (Phil 3:4–6) and into the doctrine of justification, the Christian life, and ultimate hope (Phil 3:7–21).

There is also a likelihood, according to some scholars, that the letter as we have it is
a composite from parts of three letters by Paul to the Philippians. Seemingly Phil
4:10–20 is a brief note of appreciation for help sent through Epaphroditus. The long
section from Phil 1:3 to Phil 3:1 is then another letter, with news of Paul’s
imprisonment and reports on Timothy and Epaphroditus (who has fallen ill while with Paul), along with exhortations to the Philippians about Christian conduct; and Phil 3:2–21 a third communication warning about threats to Philippian Christianity. The other verses in Phil 4 and Phil 1:1–2, are variously assigned by critics to these three underlying letters, which an editor presumably put together to produce a picture of Paul writing earnestly from prison (Phil 1–2), facing opponents of the faith (Phil 3), and with serene joy advising and thanking his Philippians (Phil 4). If all four chapters were originally a unity, then one must assume that a break occurred between the writing of Phil 3:1 and Phil 3:2, possibly involving the receipt of bad news from Philippi, and that Paul had some reasons for delaying his words of thanks for the aid brought by Epaphroditus till the end of his letter.
This beautiful letter is rich in insights into Paul’s theology and his apostolic love
and concern for the gospel and his converts. In Philippians, Paul reveals his human
sensitivity and tenderness, his enthusiasm for Christ as the key to life and death (Phil 1:21), and his deep feeling for those in Christ who dwell in Philippi. With them he shares his hopes and convictions, his anxieties and fears, revealing the total
confidence in Christ that constitutes faith (Phil 3:8–10). The letter incorporates a
hymn about the salvation that God has brought about through Christ (Phil 2:6–11),
applied by Paul to the relations of Christians with one another (Phil 2:1–5).
Philippians has been termed “the letter of joy” (Phil 4:4, 10). It is the rejoicing of
faith, based on true understanding of Christ’s unique role in the salvation of all who
profess his lordship (Phil 2:11; 3:8–12, 14, 20–21).
(source: usccbdotorg)

THE CONTENT

The principal divisions of the Letter to the Philippians are the following:
Address (1:1–11)
Progress of the Gospel (1:12–26)
Instructions for the Community (1:27–2:18)
Travel Plans of Paul and His Assistants (2:19–3:1)
Polemic: Righteousness and the Goal in Christ (3:2–21)
Instructions for the Community (4:1–9)
Gratitude for the Philippians’ Generosity (4:10–20)
Farewell (4:21–23)