Taking the Epistle

A biblical journey through the epistles

06 – Philippians



Thank you for clicking on our page for the Pauline epistle which is called Philippians, the letter is authored by the apostle Paul whilst he was in prison in Rome and is addressed to the church at Philippi, this is one of four epistles that are called “the prison epistles” (The others being Ephesians, Colossians and Philemon)

This is a series in the epistles and for other bible studies on other epistles please see our main epistle page.

The church at Philippi, located in present day Greece was an important capital city and although Paul was in a perilous state in his life, waiting in Rome for his final appeal before Caesar he still wrote boldly to this church. This letter was delivered by Epaphroditus and we see why this letter was preserved.

This letter is a great testimony to the love of the Apostle Paul to this church and he writes to thank them for what they have sent him. He also calls on them to have unity in the church that he formed on his second missionary journey. (We see an account of this in Acts 16) It is somewhat appropriate that Paul writes from prison as he was also in prison in Acts 16 in that city. God used that situation to impact the life of the jailer.

Below is an outline of the epistle to the Philippians

I. Preface (1:1–11)
A. Salutation (1:1–2)
B. Thanksgiving for the Philippians’ Participation in the Gospel (1:3–8)
C. Prayer for the Philippians’ Discerning Love to Increase until the Day of Christ (1:9-11)

II. Paul’s Present Circumstances (1:12–26)
A. Paul’s Imprisonment (1:12–13)
B. The Brothers’ Response (1:14–17)
C. Paul’s Attitude (1:18–26)

III. Practical Instructions in Sanctification (1:27–2:30)

A. Living Boldly as Citizens of Heaven (1:27–2:30)
B. Living Humbly as Servants of Christ (2:1–11)
1. The Motivation to Live Humbly (2:1–4)
2. The Model of Living Humbly (2:5–11)
a. Christ’s Emptying (2:5–8)
b. Christ’s Exaltation (2:9-11)
C. Living Obediently as Children of God (2:12–18)
1. The Energizing of God (2:12–13)
2. The Effect on the Saints (2:14–18)
D. Examples of Humble Servants (2:19–30)
1. The Example of Timothy (2:19–24)
2. The Example of Epaphroditus (2:25–30)

IV. Polemical Doctrinal Issues (3:1–4:1)
A. The Judaizers Basis: The Flesh (3:1–6)
B. Paul’s Goal: The Resurrection (3:7–11)
C. Perfection and Humility (3:12–16)
D. Paul as an Example of Conduct and Watchfulness (3:17–4:1)

V. Postlude (4:2–23)
A. Exhortations (4:2–9)
1. Being United (4:2–3)
2. Rejoicing without Anxiety (4:4–7)
3. Thinking and Acting Purely (4:8–9)
B. A Note of Thanks (4:10–20)
1. Paul’s Contentment (4:10–13)
2. The Philippians’ Gift (4:14–18)
3. God’s Provision (4:19–20)
C. Final Greetings (4:21–23)

Philippians shows us that despite our current circumstances, we can always have joy in the LORD. Not by just surviving, but living above our present issues. If Paul can exhort them like this from a jail cell, how much more can we as free men?

Below is a list of our Bible studies, please click on the hyperlinks in order to see the articles that deal with these issues, for your convenience I have also placed links in the comments section for these and other useful articles that link back to this page. (As the articles become live the hyperlinks will become active)

Line by line studies

Topical studies

Careful of your motivation – Philippians 1:14-21 – March 19th 2014
At the name of Jesus… – Philippians 2:1-11 – August 21st 2014
What is worse, a potty mouth or a potty mind? – Philippians 4:4-9 – August 22nd 2014
Prayer is the answer – Philippians 4:5-7 July 27th 2014

When the writers of the bible separated the books into chapters and verses to help indexing and finding verses, this book was split into 4 chapters, in many cases new chapters do not contain new thoughts and you will see bible studies cross over chapter lines.

God bless and I pray this was a blessing and please feel free to like, share or comment on here or whatever social media platforms you use as the Lord leads you to, as always I love questions about this or any other article so please feel free to fill in the form below, all comments are moderated to avoid profanity.

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