Paul's Epistle to the Philippians

One of Saint Paul the Apostle's four captivity epistles. The Philippians were converts of Saint Paul in Macedonia, very fond of him and dear to him. They had assisted him liberally and when he was imprisoned in Rome, 58-60, they sent him alms by Epaphroditus who had personally assisted him on his visits to Philippi. Paul responds to their messages of sympathy and generosity in a most heartfelt manner. He expresses his famous desire "to be dissolved and to be with Christ"; utters the mystery of Christ's obedience "unto death, even to the death of the Cross," so that we know "in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth"; and then discourses in the "excellent knowledge of Jesus Christ my lord." Though brief, only four chapters, the letter contains a number of passages frequently quoted, as for instance, about our Saviour reforming the body of our lowliness; our conversation being in heaven; thinking on whatsoever things are true, whatsoever just, etc.; "I can do all things in Him that strengtheneth me." It is a heart-to-heart communication.

New Catholic Dictionary

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