A comparison of the Epistle to the Philippians to the letters that Paul had written before it might seem to indicate that the church at Philippi had no censurable weaknesses at all. Such a thought, of course, cannot be true, because just as “there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins” (Eccl. 7: 20 ESV), so it is with churches, even though the church at Philippi was not charged with any doctrinal deviation or moral blemish. At this point, it is sufficient to note that, as it was a church that could be prayed for (1:4) and preached to (1:28), it obviously did not have all it needed. It could gain more. It could even lose much of what it had (see 3:1–2; 17–18). In these general but important respects, it was a church like any other in any place or time. It could prosper or decline. The apostle Paul wrote so that it might grow (1:9–11, 25–30), and as he did so in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the only Head of the Church, what he wrote speaks to churches at the present time.
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- Background to the letter
- Scripture readings before each chapter
- Title: For the Sake of the Gospel: Philippians Simply Explained
- Author: Hywel Jones
- Series: Welwyn Commentary Series
- Publisher: Evangelical Press
- Publication Date: 2010
- Pages: 167
About Hywel Jones
Hywel Jones became professor of practical theology at Westminster Seminary, California, in 2000. Prior to that, he was editorial director of the Banner of Truth Trust and principal of London Theological Seminary from 1985–1996. He was a pastor at Grove Chapel in London and at Borras Park in Wrexham. He and his wife, Nansi, were married in 1961 and blessed with three children and five grandchildren. He is the author of A Study Commentary on Job, also published by Evangelical Press.