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Study Guide

About the Book of Philippians

The church at Philippi was the first church that Paul established in Europe (Acts 16:12-40). God had directed him there in an extraordinary manner (Acts 16:6-10). Silas and Timothy worked with him there, and several other people soon joined them (4:2-3). It was the first place where Luke worked with Paul.

Many people became Christians there. After Paul left, Christians from Philippi continued to support Paul with their gifts (4:15-16). The church at Philippi was the only church from which Paul accepted gifts. Paul considered its members to be his partners in the work of God.

In about the year 58 A.D. (25 years after Christ’s death), Paul became a prisoner in Caesarea, and two years later, in Rome. It seems likely that Paul wrote the Book of Philippians during this period of his life. It was perhaps 10 years after Paul established Philippi’s church.

For some time, there had been no contact between Paul and Philippi’s church. It seemed as if they had forgotten Paul. However, their love for him was genuine. When they heard a report about his difficult situation in prison, they collected a gift for him. They then send Epaphroditus to take the gift (4:10-11).

It was a long and dangerous journey to reach Paul. Epaphroditus became ill on the journey and he almost died (2:25-28). However, Paul received the gifts with great joy at their love (4:18). When Epaphroditus recovered, Paul sent him back to Philippi with the Book of Philippians as a ‘thank-you letter’.

Next part: Reasons to study the Book of Philippians


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