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  • East Martin CRC

Welcome to Philippi

Philippians 1:1-11

Verse 1 Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all God’s holy people in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons:

Today we begin to look at the book of Philippians. This was a church that was planted on Paul’s second missionary journey and revisited on his third. Philippi was a city in northeast Greece that was under Roman control at the time that Paul, Silas, Timothy and Luke journeyed through. It was a primary route from the east into Europe.

This was the first church that Paul planted in Europe. Paul had been led here by the Holy Spirit after being hindered by the Spirit from going in the direction Paul had been aiming to go (Acts 16:6-8). Paul obeyed the leading of the Holy Spirit and they boarded a ship at Troas heading over the Aegean Sea, stopping at the island of Samothrace before continuing on to Neapolis, the seaport that lead to the primary route through Philippi.

Knowing that the Holy Spirit was so purposeful in leading Paul to this city shows just how much the Father pursues those He loves. And it also shows how obedient Paul was to his calling. Paul had such a great love of the Father that he was willing to go wherever the Spirit led. Paul wasn’t traveling alone and the men he was traveling with were just as willing to follow the leading of the Spirit.

There was Silas. Silas was from Jerusalem and had been sent, along with Judas (also known as Barsabbas), with a letter to the Church in Antioch regarding how to manage disputes about the law and freedom in Christ (Acts 15:22-34). When Paul and Barnabas went their separate ways because of feelings about John Mark, Silas was commissioned to go with Paul on his second missionary journey (Acts 15:40).

Timothy was a young man that Paul had met in Lystra during their journey. Paul would mentor Timothy and came to think of him as a son. They had a close relationship as is seen in the letters that Paul wrote to him when Timothy was a pastor in Ephesus.

Luke was a doctor who seems to join them in Troas as the narrative of Acts 16 changes from “they” traveled here and there to saying “we” boarded a ship in Troas. Luke’s first person account of the time in Philippi will aid in our understanding of the work God was doing there.

Making It Personal

Has God ever guided you in a way that was different than your plan? Did you obey His guidance? Do you have people that you do ministry with?

Making It Personal Kids

Why would Jesus direct you to do something that you weren’t planning on doing? Is it important to obey Jesus even when it isn’t something you want to do? Do you have Christian friends who you can enjoy time with?

Closing Prayer

Father, thank You for the example of godly men listening to Your leading. Teach us what we need to know from this study of Philippians. Convict us of things that we need to work on in our lives. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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