This letter is in itself a revelation of Christian experience. The word “sin" is not mentioned. The flesh is referred to only that it may be ignored. It is characterized by a revelation of the mind of love. Associating Timothy with himself, the apostle described Timothy and himself as the "servants of Jesus Christ."
Declaring that he thanks God upon all his remembrance of Philippians he tells them that he is praying that their “love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and all discernment." Such an experience will enable them to "approve the things that are excellent," and so "be sincere and void of offence unto the day of Christ."
Thrice over he referred to his bonds. He declared that these “have fallen out unto the progress of the Gospel," and that in three ways. First "throughout the whole praetorian guard and to all the rest," the fact that he is a prisoner of Christ has been manifest. Second, therefore, a effect had been produced on his brethren. They had become confident through his bonds. And yet again reference is made to a Judaizing element in the Church. On every hand the Lord is magnified In view of all these things the apostle was able to write, "To me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." Then he stated his mental debate. From the purely personal aspect it would be very far better that he should depart. The triumph, how ever, is on the side of sacrificial service, for his remaining will minister to progress and joy in the faith of others. From the standpoint of Personal experience he wrote to them concerning their fellowship, and declared that "to YOU it bath been granted on the behalf of Christ . . . to suffer."
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24