« PreviousContinue »
Julian Pe cons, and gives them his apostolical Benediction—He Rome. riod, 4775, VulgarÆra,
thanks God for their Conversion in every Prayer he 62.
offers, with joy making Prayer for their continued Bless-
ings, and for their participation in the Faith of the Gos-
pel from the first Day of his preaching it till non ; for
he is confident that he who has begun a good Work in
them, will be completing it till the Day of Death-He
tells them it is reasonable for him to hold this Opinion of
them, because they had remembered him in his Bonds,
(chap. ii. 25. iv. 14.)-He declares that his Love for them
resembles that which Jesus Christ felt for Mankind; and
he prays that their mutual Love to each other and Love
to God may increase with the Knowledge of God's Per-
fections, and with their spiritual Sense of his Truth ;
that by their own Experience they may judge of every
Doctrine, by comparing it with those they had received;
that they may be sincere in their Profession of the Gos-
pel, neither offending Man nor God by their own Apos.
tacy till the Hour of their Death, having their whole Life
filled with holy Actions and Tempers, according to the
Doctrine of that God, who through his Spirit working in
them may be glorified.
1 Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to
all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with
the bishops and deacons ;
2 Grace be unto you, and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you,
4 Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,
5 For your fellowship in the gospel, from the first day until now;
6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ :
7 Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace.
8 For God is my record, how greatly I long after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ.
9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment;
10 That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ ;
11 Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ unto the glory and praise of God.
§ 2. PHIL. I. 12–20.
Rome. riod, 4775. Vulgar Æra, The Apostle next comforts them with the Assurance that 62.
his long Imprisonment has tended to promote the Gospel ;
being made the Means of causing it to be known in the
Emperor's Palace, and all over Rome-That many
Christian Brothers gaining confidence by his Success and
Firmness, were now emboldened to preach it—Some indeed
preach Christ for the Purpose of Division and Envy,
asserting him to be the long-predicted King of the Jews,
(Acts xvii. 3. 7.) a Doctrine parlicularly offensive to
the Romans, and some from Good-will and Friendship to
himself—The first preach Christ from Contention, that
they might provoke the Roman Magistrates against him,
thereby intending to add other Rigours to his Imprison-
ment ; and the other from a sincere Love of the Gospel,
well knowing that he was sent to Rome for the purpose of
defending it both by his Sufferings and his Preaching-
He rejoices in the Advancement of the Gospel, in what-
ever way it be made known—His confidence that the
Knowledge of the Nature of the Gospel will be made the
Means of his Deliverance, through Their Prayers ; and
the Spirit of Jesus Christ supplying him with Grace
during his Trials, before his Persecutors, according to
his earnest Expectation and Hope, that he may not be
ashamed fully at this time to declare, as he had ever
done, the Truth of the Gospel, that Christ might be still
magnified in his Body, through his Spirit, whether by his
release or by his death.
12 But I would ye should understand, brethren, that
the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather
unto the furtherance of the gospel;
18 So that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places ;
14 And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
15 Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife, and some also of good will.
16 The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds ;
17 But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel.
18 What then ? notwithstanding every way, whether in pretence or in truth, Christ is preached ; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.
19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,
20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope,
Jalian Pe- that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all bold- Rome.
riod, 4775. ness, as always, so now also, Christ shall be magnified in
my body, whether it be by life or by death.
s. PHIL. I. 21, to the end.
The Apostle declares that his Life belongs to, or is the Pro-
perty of Christ, but that Death would be to his own Hap-
piness-if his Life is continued, the Honour of Christ
would be the Fruit of his Labours ; if therefore he had
his own Choice, he would hesitate which to prefer-
having a desire to depart, and to be immediately with
Christ, which is inexpressibly better than continuing in this
World, as far as he is himself concerned—But to continue
in the Flesh is more expedient for them, and being con-
vinced of this he is persuaded that his Life will be conti-
nued for their furtherance in the Way of Salvation, and
for their Joy, arising from the Faith, which will be
strengthened by his Deliverance, giving occasion for more
abundant reason to rejoice in Jesus Christ, who had again
restored him unto them—But whatever happens to him,
their Conduct should be consistent with the Gospel of
Christ, that whether he is with them or absent from them,
he may hear that they stand fast in one Spirit and with one
Mind, contending for the Faith of the Gospel : and are not
terrified at the Persecutions to which they may be ex-
posed by Unbelievers, as these are evident Tokens of their
own approaching Destruction, but to them, are clear
Proofs of Salvation, and that by the Power of God him-
self-For to them it is graciously permitted, for the sake
of Christ, not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for
him, that they may more abundantly partake of his Glory,
being called to the same Conflict with the Adversaries of
the Gospel, as they saw in him when he was with them
at Philippi (Acts xvi. 19–40.) and now hear to be in him
21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
22 But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my
bour : yet what I shall choose I wot not.
23 For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better :
24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.
25 And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all, for your furtherance and joy of faith;
26 That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ for me, by my coming to you again.
27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ ; that, whether I come and see you, or
Julian Pe- else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand Rome. riod, 4775. fast in one spirit, with one mind, striving together for the Vulgar Æra, faith of the gospel ; 62.
28 And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of şalvation, and that of God.
29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake ;
30 Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me.
94. Phil. ii. 1-11.
The Apostle calls on the Philippians by all that was dear to
them in their holy Religion, by the Consolation afforded
them by the Sufferings of Christ, by his Love, by their
Fellowship with him through the Spirit, and by his Com-
passion, to complete his Joy, by being alike disposed to
maintain the Faith of the Gospel, having the same Love
towards each other ; having the same Spirit, and by him
the same great Object in Vier-Por which end he cau-
tions them never for the sake of Distinction to oppose each
other in the Exercise of their spiritual Gifts, but by a
Humility of Conduct, shew that they reckon others better
than themselves-He cautions them to set a proper Regard
on the Gifts and Interests of others, as well as on those
which more immediately concern themselves-Let the same
Disposition be in them as was in Christ Jesus, who la-
boured not for his own Interest, but for the Salvation of all
Mankind, who before his Incarnation being in the form
of God, or his visible Glory, (Deut. v. 23, 24.) did not
eagerly desire to appear equal with God, but emptied
himself of all his Glory, and he who was before in the
form of God, assumed the form of a Servant, and being
made in the Likeness of Men, he subjected himself to the
lowest Degree of Humiliation for the Šins of Man, by sub-
mitting to the most ignominious Death of the Cross; for
which reason God has highly exalted his human Nature,
and hath given him a Name, which expresses a Dignity
beyond any other—the Name Jesus, or Saviour of the
World, who was to be acknonledged as the Author of Sal-
vation, by the angelic Hosts of Heaven, by the human
Beings of Earth, and by fallen Spirits under the Earth,
that every intelligent Being shall confess that Jesus Christ
has an Authority and Pre-eminence over all; that he is
Lord of all, to the Glory of God the Father.
1 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any
comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any
bowels and mercies,
Julian Pe. 2 Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be like-minded, having the Rome. riod, 4775: same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Valgar Æra,
8 Let nothing be done through strife or vain glory ; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus :
6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God :
7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men :
8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name :
10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
§ 5. PHIL. ii. 12-16.
St. Paul exhorts the Philippians, that although he is not
with them to remind them of their Duty, they may con-
tinue to walk in the Humility and Disinterestedness of
Christ, working out their own Salvation with holy Fear
and Trembling, knowing that it is God, by his Holy
Spirit inwardly working in them, which affords them after
his sovereign Pleasure, both the Will and the Power to
accomplish their Salvation-He cautions them that all
Things be done without Murmurings and Disputings, that
they may be blameless in themselves, and inoffensive to
others, shewing by their holy Conduct that they are par-
takers of the Divine Nature, not meriting rebuke in the
midst of a crooked and perverse Generation of unbelieving
Jews, among whom they shine as the heavenly Luminaries,
giving Light to a dark World-holding out to all Men
the Doctrine of eternal Life, that he may have reason to
rejoice at the Day of Judgment on their Account, by which
means it will
that he has neither exerted his apostolic Office, nor laboured in vain.
12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my