Learning the Joy of Faith in a World of Trouble
We focus on Philippians in this period between Easter and Pentecost: a time of Disciples beginning to grasp the reality and transformation of the resurrection. Paul is living and carrying that resurrection power into a world that had no grasp of it – Roman cities.
Paul is in Ephesus and writes to Philippi. Both were cities of Roman government. Ephesus, capital of Roman Asia, center of Artemis and Emperor worship. Jewish community, culture, magic, riots, etc. Luke shows complex situation. Philippi was a Roman colony. Little Jewish presence, but strong patriotism to Rome. Close relation to Paul.
What happened? Paul is in prison/chains in Ephesus. His Roman citizenship got him out of jail in Philippi, but not in Ephesus. Paul is in danger of execution. Paul has both supporters and enemies (Demetrius). Believers have become bolder. Paul’s friends are in danger. Many people are talking about this King that Paul proclaims!