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EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS - Chapter 4 - Verse 1

 

Philippians CHAPTER 4

 

ANALYSIS OF THE CHAPTER.

THIS chapter comprises the following points :—

I. Exhortations.

II. Solemn commands to live as became Christians.

III. The expression of a grateful acknowledgment of the favours which he had received from them; and,

IV. The customary salutations.

I. Exhortations, Php 4:1-3.

(1.) He exhorts them to stand fast in the Lord, Php 4:1

(2.) He entreats Euodias and Syntyche, who appear to have been alienated from each other, to be reconciled, Php 4:2

(3.) He entreats one whom he calls a "true yokefellow" to render assistance to those women who had laboured with him in the gospel, Php 4:3.

II. Commands, Php 4:4-9. He commands them to rejoice in the Lord always, Php 4:4; to let their moderation be known to all, Php 4:5; to have no anxiety about worldly matters, but in all their necessities to go to God. Php 4:6,7; and to do whatever was honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report, Php 4:8,9.

III. A grateful acknowledgment of their kindness, Php 4:10-19. He says that their care of him had been manifested again, in such away as to be highly grateful to his feelings, Php 4:10. He did not indeed say that he had suffered, for he had learned, in whatever state he was, to be content, Php 4:11-13; but they had shown a proper spirit in endeavouring to relieve his necessities, Php 4:14. He remarks that their church was the only one that had aided him when he was in Macedonia, and that they had sent to him more than once when he was in Thessalonica; and says that their favour now was an offering acceptable to God, who would abundantly reward them, Php 4:15-20.

IV. Salutations, Php 4:21-23.

Verse 1. Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for. Doddridge unites this verse with the previous chapter, and supposes that it is the proper close of the solemn statement which the apostle makes there. The word therefore wste has undoubted reference to the remarks made there; and the meaning is, that in view of the fact that there were many professed Christians who were not sincere— that the "citizenship" of all true Christians was in heaven, and that Christians looked for the coming of the Lord Jesus, who would make them like to himself, the apostle exhorts them to stand fast ill the Lord. The accumulation of epithets of endearment in this verse shows his tender regard for them, and is expressive of his earnest solicitude for their welfare, anti his deep conviction of their danger. The term "longed for" is expressive of strong affection. Php 1:8; 2:26.

My joy. The source of my joy. He rejoiced in the fact that they had been converted under him; and in their holy walk and theft friendship. Our chief joy is in our friends; and the chief happiness of a minister of the gospel is in the pure lives of those to whom he ministers. See 3 Jo 1:4.

And crown. Comp. 1 Th 2:19. The word crown means a circlet, chaplet, or diadem,

(1.) as the emblem of royal dignity— the symbol of office;

(2.) as the prize conferred on victors in the public games, 1 Co 9:25; and hence as an emblem of the rewards of a future life, 2 Ti 4:8; Jas 1:12; 1 Pe 5:4;

(3) anything that is an ornament or honour, as one glories in a crown Comp. Pr 12:4, "A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband;" Pr 14:24, "The crown of the wise is their riches;" Pr 16:31, "The hoary head is a crown of glory; Pr 17:6, "Children's children are the crown of old men." The idea here is, that the church at Philippi was that in which the apostle gloried. He regarded it as a high honour to have been the means of founding such a church, and he looked upon it with the same interest with which a monarch looks upon the diadem which he wears.

So stand fast in the Lord. In the service of the Lord, and in the strength which he imparts. See Barnes "Eph 6:13, See Barnes "Eph 6:14".

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