Paul wrote to the Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon from jail, probably in Rome. He taught about the mission of Christ and what it means to live as a disciple of Christ. All people must work out their own salvation with fear and trembling, but because of Christ we can receive grace, salvation, and strength.
Paul Encourages Saints to Follow Christ
Chart 15-20: “Chiasmus in Philemon,” Charting the New Testament
Chart 15-20 gives an overview of the letter of Paul to Philemon. It details his use of chiasmus to make his point clear of the importance of developing Christlike attributes.
“I Can Do All Things through Christ,” Ensign, July 1996
Part of our experience on earth is to pass through trials. “The Lord will strengthen us in our trials—if we seek his help and open our hearts and minds to the influence of his Spirit.” The message of Philippians 4 is “when we believe we can do all things through Christ, our burdens become lighter, and we will find the peace of God. The surest way to do this is to develop the characteristics of a true follower of Jesus Christ. This short article discusses how we can develop such attributes to allow the spirit to be with us more.
“Did Paul Address His Wife in Philippi?” Thomas Wayment and John Gee, Maxwell Institute
In Philippians 4:3, Paul’s use of the word σύζυγος [suzugos] “follows the common understanding of the day and of earlier Jewish usae as a word for ‘spouse.’ The earliest Christian interpreters understood Philippians 4:3 as referring to Paul’s wife, but later Christian authors, who rejected marriage and were inclined to remake Paul in their own image, rejected the notion that Paul was married and reinterpreted the passage, both in translations they made and in the commentaries they wrote, as referring not to Paul’s wife but to someone (anyone) else.”
“The Condescension of God according to Paul” Frank F. Judd, Shedding Light on the New Testament
Looking at the details in Philippians shows that Paul warned converts that they might experience trials for the sake of the gospel, as he had. Philippians 2:6-11 is a hymn about Christ’s premortality, mortality, and postmortality. Paul’s Christ hymn can be compared to Nephi’s vision in 1 Nephi 11, especially regarding the condescension of God.