Philippians 1:7
Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace.
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(7) It is meet.—Rather, it is but right, or just; it is but your due.

To think this of you all.—Rather, to be in this mind; to have this feeling on behalf of you all. The word here rendered “to think” is used with especial frequency in this Epistle (see Philippians 2:2; Philippians 2:5; Philippians 3:15; Philippians 3:19; Philippians 4:2; Philippians 4:10), as also in the Epistle to the Romans (Romans 8:5; Romans 11:20; Romans 12:3; Romans 12:16; Romans 14:16; Romans 15:5). It is variously rendered; but it always refers, not to a single definite opinion, but to an habitual conviction or feeling.

I have you in my heart.—This (and not the marginal reading) is to be taken. The original is, grammatically speaking, ambiguous, but both the order and the context are decisive. Compare, for the sense, 2Corinthians 3:2, “Ye are our epistle, written in our hearts.”

Both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel.—These words are certainly to be connected, as in our version. St. Paul unites his bonds with “the defence and confirmation of the gospel”—that is, with his pleading for it against objections, and establishment of it by positive teaching—on the ground stated in Philippians 1:12-13, that these, his bonds, had tended “to the furtherance of the gospel.” He accepts the help sent him by the Philippians, in which they had (see Philippians 4:14) “communicated” (in the original the word used is the same as here) “with his affliction,” as a means of fellowship with him in the whole of this work of evangelisation. It is true that in Philippians 1:30 he speaks of the Philippians as having themselves to undergo “the same conflict” as his own; but the expression “in my bonds, &c.,” can hardly be satisfied simply by this kind of fellowship.

Ye all are partakers of my grace.—Here, on the contrary, the marginal reading is preferable. Ye are all partakers with me of the gracei.e., of the privilege described in Ephesians 3:8. “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.” See below, Philippians 1:29; “To you it is given”—that is (in the original), “given as a grace”—not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer for His sake.”

1:1-7 The highest honour of the most eminent ministers is, to be servants of Christ. And those who are not really saints on earth, never will be saints in heaven. Out of Christ, the best saints are sinners, and unable to stand before God. There is no peace without grace. Inward peace springs from a sense of Divine favour. And there is no grace and peace but from God our Father, the fountain and origin of all blessings. At Philippi the apostle was evil entreated, and saw little fruit of his labour; yet he remembers Philippi with joy. We must thank our God for the graces and comforts, gifts and usefulness of others, as we receive the benefit, and God receives the glory. The work of grace will never be perfected till the day of Jesus Christ, the day of his appearance. But we may always be confident God will perform his good work, in every soul wherein he has really begun it by regeneration; though we must not trust in outward appearances, nor in any thing but a new creation to holiness. People are dear to their ministers, when they receive benefit by their ministry. Fellow-sufferers in the cause of God should be dear one to another.Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all - "There is a reason why I should cherish this hope of you, and this confident expectation that you will be saved. That reason is found in the evidence which you have given that you are sincere Christians. Having evidence of that, it is proper that I should believe that you will finally reach heaven."

Because I have you in my heart - Margin, "Ye have me in your." The Greek will bear either, though the former translation is the most obvious. The meaning is, that he was warmly attached to them, and had experienced many proofs of their kindness; and that there was, therefore, a propriety in his wishing for their salvation. Their conduct toward him, moreover, in his trials, had convinced him that they were actuated by Christian principle; and it was proper that he should believe that they would be kept to eternal life.

Both in my bonds - While I have been a prisoner - referring to the care which they had taken to minister to his needs; Philippians 4:10, Philippians 4:14, Philippians 4:18.

And in the defence - Greek: apology. He is probably referring to the time when he made his defense before Nero, and vindicated himself from the charges which had been brought against him; see the notes at 2 Timothy 4:16. Perhaps he means here, that on that occasion he was abandoned by those who should have stood by him, but that the Philippians showed him all the attention which they could. It is not impossible that they may have sent some of their number to sympathize with him in his trials, and to assure him of the unabated confidence of the church.

And confirmation of the gospel - In my efforts to defend the gospel, and to make it known; see Philippians 1:17. The allusion is probably to the fact that, in all his efforts to defend the gospel, he had been sure of their sympathy and cooperation. Perhaps he refers to some assistance which he had derived from them in this cause, which is now to us unknown.

Ye all are partakers of my grace - Margin, "Or, with me of grace." The meaning is, that as they had participated with him in the defense of the gospel; as in all his troubles and persecutions they had made common cause with him, so it followed that they would partake of the same tokens of the divine favor. He expected that the divine blessing would follow his efforts in the cause of the gospel, and he says that they would share in the blessing. They had shown all the sympathy which they could in his trials; they had nobly stood by him when others forsook him; and he anticipated, as a matter of course, that they would all share in the benefits which would flow to him in his efforts in the cause of the Redeemer.

7. meet—Greek, "just."

to think this—to have the prayerful confidence I expressed (Php 1:4-6).

of you—literally, "in behalf of you." Paul's confident prayer in their behalf was that God would perfect His own good work of grace in them.

because, &c.—Punctuate and translate, "Because I have you in my heart (so Php 1:8; otherwise the Greek and the words immediately following in the verse, favor the Margin, 'Ye have me in your heart … being partakers of my grace') (both, in my bonds, and in my defense and confirmation of the Gospel), you (I say) all being fellow partakers of my grace." This last clause thus assigns the reason why he has them in his heart (that is, cherished in his love, 2Co 3:2; 7:3), even in his bonds, and in his defense and confirmation of the Gospel (such as he was constantly making in private, Ac 28:17-23; his self-defense and confirmation of the Gospel being necessarily conjoined, as the Greek implies; compare Php 1:17), namely, "inasmuch as ye are fellow partakers of my grace": inasmuch as ye share with me in "the fellowship of the Gospel" (Php 1:5), and have manifested this, both by suffering as I do for the Gospel's sake (Php 1:28-30), and by imparting to me of your substance (Php 4:15). It is natural and right for me thus confidently to pray in your behalf. (Ellicott, and others translate, "To be thus minded for you all"), because of my having you in my warmest remembrances even in my bonds, since you are sharers with me in the Gospel grace. Bonds do not bind love.

Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all; i.e. consonant to the law of equity and charity, Acts 4:19 1 Corinthians 13:7 Colossians 4:1, with 2 Peter 1:13. It behoves me to pass this judgment on you all, upon good grounds.

Because I have you in my heart; not barely in that he had them as it were engraved upon his heart, 2 Corinthians 3:2,3 7:3; for he could live and die with them, whom he did continually present unto God (as before).

Inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation if the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace; but in that (for which they had gotten so much of his cordial affection) they were co-partners with him in the like precious faith, 2 Peter 1:1; and holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, Hebrews 3:1; as children of light, 1 Thessalonians 5:5; walking in faith and love, 2 Thessalonians 1:3; maintaining the communion of saints, in showing the reality of the same grace with him, in that, as Philippians 1:29, it was given to them in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake. Which he reckoned they did in compassionately and seasonably supporting and relieving of him in his imprisonment, whereby the gospel was defended, and what he had preached of it was confirmed, by his becoming a real patron of it, in holding fast the profession and ratifying the confession of his faith, in glorying that he was counted worthy to suffer them for the name of Christ, Acts 5:41 1 Peter 4:15,16; wherein they did by all honest means succour him, and showed themselves companions with him, Philippians 4:14 Hebrews 10:33.

Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all,.... Some connect these words with Philippians 1:3; as if the apostle's sense was, that it became him to be thus affected to them, and mindful of them in his prayers, to make request for them with joy, and give thanks for their fellowship in the Gospel, and continuance in it; but they seem rather to refer to his confidence of the good work begun in them, being performed until the day of Christ, and which was but just and right in him to entertain and assert; and may be understood either of a judgment of faith, or a judgment of charity: in a judgment of faith the apostle might be confident, and so may every other man, that all that believe in Christ truly, and have a good work begun in them, that shall be finished; for nothing is more certain, nor is there anything that a man can be more confident of, than this, that he that believes in Christ shall be saved; and this the apostle was fully persuaded of with respect to everyone in this church, that was a believer in Christ; and in a judgment of charity, it was meet and proper, just and right, to think, judge, hope, and believe so of everyone of them, since there was nothing in their profession, conduct, and conversation, showing the contrary:

because I have you in my heart; or "you have me in your heart"; and either reading carries in it a reason why it was fit and right that he should so think and judge concerning them; because they were, as the Syriac version renders it, "put" or "laid" upon his heart; whenever he was at the throne of grace, his heart was enlarged on their account, his affections were wonderfully drawn out towards them, and they were ever in his mind, "both in his bonds, and in the defence of the Gospel"; whether in the prison, or in the pulpit, or whatever he was about in the cause or affairs of religion, they were in his heart and thoughts; from whence he concluded they must belong to God, the good work must be in them, and would be performed; it is a token for good when the Lord lays the case of any upon the hearts of his ministers, or any of his people; and also, because they had him in their hearts, they were affectionate to him, ever thoughtful and mindful of him; and had lately given a specimen of their love to him, as a servant of Christ, and prisoner of the Lord; and as they, so he might know, that they had passed from death to life, because they loved the brethren, and him in particular for his works' sake, who had been an useful instrument in the hand of God among them: and another reason follows,

inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the Gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace; or "partakers with me of grace"; meaning either that they were partakers of the same electing, redeeming, adopting, justifying, pardoning, and regenerating grace, as he was; had obtained the same like precious faith in Christ, and knowledge of him, as he had, though not to the same degree; and therefore might well be assured of the performance of the good work in them, having no more to doubt of their salvation than of his own: or rather by "grace", or as the Vulgate Latin version reads it, "joy", he designs his sufferings for Christ, and the sake of his Gospel; which he so calls, because it was given him by God, as a token of his favour, and a mark of honour and respect, to suffer for Christ, as well as believe in him; and therefore rejoiced that he was counted worthy to suffer shame for his name. Now these Philippians were partakers with him of this, both in his "bonds", by sympathizing with him, praying for him, sending relief unto him, and by suffering such like things themselves; and "in the defence and confirmation of the Gospel", whether by suffering, preaching, or writing; they stood by him, encouraged and assisted him, when others forsook him, and laid difficulties and discouragements in his way; on account of all which it was but meet and proper he should entertain such sentiments of them as before expressed.

Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my {e} bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my {f} grace.

(e) A true proof of a true knitting together with Christ.

(f) He calls his bonds grace, as though he had received some singular benefit.

Php 1:7. Subjective justification of the confidence expressed in Php 1:6. How should he otherwise than cherish it, and that on the ground of his objective experience (αὐτὸ τοῦτο), since it was to him, through his love to his readers, a duty and obligation! Not to cherish it would be wrong. “Caritas enim omnia sperat,” Pelagius.

As to καθώς, which, in the conception of the corresponding relation, states the ground, comp. on Php 3:17; 1 Corinthians 1:6; Ephesians 1:4; Matthew 6:11.

On δίκαιον, comp. Acts 4:19; Ephesians 6:1; Php 4:8; Colossians 4:1; 2 Peter 1:12. A classical author would have written: δίκαιον ἐμὲ τοῦτο φρονεῖν (Herod. i. 39; Dem. 198. 8; Plat. Symp. p. 214 C), or: δίκαιός εἰμι τοῦτο φρ. (Herod. i. 32; Dem. 1469. 18, and frequently; Thuc. i. 40. 3).

τοῦτο φρονεῖν] to have this feeling, this practical bent of mind in favour of you, by which is meant the confidence expressed in Php 1:6, and not his striving in prayer for the perfecting of his readers’ salvation (Php 1:4), which the sense of the word φρονεῖν does not admit of (in opposition to Weiss), as it is not equivalent to ζητεῖν (comp. on Colossians 3:2). See besides, Huther, l.c. p. 405 f.

On ὑπέρ, comp. Php 4:10; 2Ma 14:8; Eur. Archel. fr. xxv. 2 f.; Plut. Phil. c. Flam. 3; on τοῦτο φρ., Galatians 5:10, οὐδὲν ἄλλο φρ. The special reference of the sense of φρονεῖν: to be mindful about something, must have been suggested by the context, as in Php 4:10; but is here insisted on by Hofmann, and that in connection with the error, that with καθώς the protasis of an apodosis is introduced. The φρονεῖν is here perfectly general, cogitare ac sentire, but is characterized by τοῦτο as a εὖ φρονεῖν, which Paul feels himself bound to cherish in the interest of the salvation of all his readers (ὑπὲρ πάντων ὑμῶν).

διὰ τὸ ἔχειν με ἐν τῇ καρδίᾳ ὑμᾶς] An expression of heartfelt love (comp. 2 Corinthians 7:3) on the part of the apostle towards his readers, not on the part of his readers towards him (Oeder, Michaelis, Storr, Rosenmüller, am Ende, Flatt), thus making ὑμᾶς the subject; although the sing. καρδία (comp. Ephesians 4:18; Ephesians 5:19; Ephesians 6:5; Romans 1:21; 2 Corinthians 3:15, and elsewhere) is not against this view, the position of the words is opposed to it, as is also the context, see Php 1:8. The readers are present to the apostle in his loving heart.

ἔν τε τοῖς δεσμοῖς κ.τ.λ.] so that, accordingly, this state of suffering, and the great task which is incumbent on me in it, cannot dislodge you from my heart. See already Chrysostom and Pelagius. These words, ἔν τε τοῖς δεσμοῖς κ.τ.λ., set forth the faithful and abiding love, which even his heavy misfortunes cannot change into concern for himself alone. They contain, however, the two points, co-ordinated by τέκαί (as well … as also): (1) The position of the apostle, and (2) his employment in this position. The latter, which, through the non-repetition of the article before βεβ., is taken as a whole (Buttmann, neut. Gr. p. 294 [E. T. 342]), is both antithetical, the defence of the gospel, and also thetical, the confirmation of it, that is, the corroboration of its truth by proof, testimony, etc., its verification; comp. Hebrews 6:16; Romans 15:8; Mark 16:20; Thucyd. i. 140. 6, iv. 87. 1; Plat. Polit. p. 309 C; Wis 5:18. For an instance of this kind of βεβαίωσις during the earliest period of the apostle’s captivity at Rome, see Acts 28:23. Hofmann, taking a groundless objection to our explanation from the use of τέκαί (see, however, Baeumlein, Partik. p. 225), refuses to connect the τέ with the following καί; he prefers to connect with the one ἔχειν, namely with the ἔχειν ἐν τῇ καρδίᾳ, another, namely an ἔχειν συγκοινωνούς. This is an artificial conjunction of very different references of the ἔχειν, yielding the illogical formalism: I have you (1) in my heart, and (2) for my companions, etc. The latter would indeed be only a more precise qualitative definition of the former. The question, moreover, whether in τῇ ἀπολ. κ. βεβ. τοῦ εὐαγγ. Paul intended to speak of his judicial examination (Heinrichs, van Hengel), or of his extra-judicial action and ministry during his captivity, cannot be answered without arbitrariness, except by allowing that both were meant. For the words do not justify us in excluding the judicial defence (Wieseler, Chronol. d. apostol. Zeitalt. p. 430), since the ἀπολογία might be addressed not merely to Jews and Judaists, but also to Gentile judges.

τοῦ εὐαγγ.] belongs to τῇ ἀπολ. κ. βεβαιώσει, and not to βεβ. only; the latter view would make τῇ ἀπολ. denote the personal vindication (Chrysostom, Estius, and others), but is decisively opposed by the non-repetition—closely coupling the two words—of the article before βεβ. But to interpret ἀπολογία and βεβαίωσις as synonymous (Rheinwald), or to assume an ἓν διὰ δυοῖν for ἀπολογίᾳ εἰς βεβαίωσιν (Heinrichs), is logically incorrect, and without warrant in the connection. It is also contrary to the context (on account of τῇ ἀπολογίᾳ) to understand the βεβαίωσις τ. εὐαγγ. as the actual confirmation afforded by the apostle’s sufferings (Chrysostom, Theodoret, Erasmus, and others).

συγκοινωνούς μου κ.τ.λ.] characterizes the ὑμᾶς, and supplies a motive for the ἔχειν με ἐν τῇ καρδίᾳ ὑμᾶς κ.τ.λ.: since you, etc. This love to you, unalterable even in my affliction, is based on the real sympathy, which results from all of you being joint-partakers with me in the grace. The emphasis is laid, primarily on συγκ. and then on πάντας, which is correlative with the previous πάντων. The idea of the grace which the apostle had received (τῆς χάριτος) is defined solely from the connection, and that indeed by the two points immediately preceding, ἔν τε τοῖς δεσμοῖς μου and τῇ ἀπολ. κ. βεβ. τοῦ εὐαγγ., namely, as God’s gift of grace enabling them to suffer for the gospel (comp. Php 1:29 f.; see also Acts 5:41; 1 Peter 2:19), and therewith to defend and confirm instead of falling away from and denying it. “Magnus in hac re honos, magna praemia” (Grotius). Paul knew that the experience of this grace—for the setting forth of which the context itself amply suffices, without the need of any retrospective ταύτης (as is Hofmann’s objection)—had been vouchsafed not only to himself, but also to all his Philippian converts, who like him had had to suffer for Christ (Php 1:29 f.); and thus, in his bonds, and whilst vindicating and confirming the gospel, conscious of the holy similarity in this respect between his and their experience, sympathetically and lovingly he bore them, as his fellow-sharers of this grace, in his heart. He knew that, whilst he was suffering, and defending and confirming the gospel, he had all his readers as συμπάσχοντες, συναπολογούμενοι, συμβεβαιοῦντες τὸ εὐαγγέλιον, and that in virtue of the above-named grace of God, as a manifestation of which he had recognised his bonds, and his activity for the gospel in these bonds. Others interpret it much too generally and vaguely, looking at the tender and special references of the context, as the “gratiosa evangelii donatio” (Hoelemann, comp. Wolf, Heinrichs, de Wette, and others). Likewise without any more immediate reference to the context, and inappropriate, is its explanation of the apostolic office (Romans 1:5, et al.), the Philippians being said to be active promoters of this through their faith (see Theodore of Mopsuestia); along with which a reference is introduced to the assistance rendered (Storr, am Ende, Rosenmüller, Flatt, Hofmann; comp. also Weiss)—which assistance has come to be regarded as a κοινωνία εἰς τὸ εὐαγγέλιον (but see on Php 1:5), as Hofmann expresses it. Those who feel dissatisfied that Paul does not mention at the very beginning of the epistle the assistance rendered to him, prescribe a certain line for the apostle; which, however, he does not follow, but gives expression first of all to his love for the Philippians in subjects of a higher and more general interest, and puts off his expression of thanks, properly so called, to the end of the epistle. Lastly, the translation gaudii (Vulgate, Itala, Ambrosiaster, Pelagius, Primasius, Sedulius) is derived from another reading (χαρᾶς).

The σύν in συγκοινωνούς refers to μου, my joint-partakers (Php 4:14) of the grace, thus combining συγκ. with a double genitive of the person and the thing, of the subject and the object (Kühner, II. 1, p. 288; Winer, p. 180 [E. T. 239]), and placing it first with emphasis; for this joint fellowship is the point of the love in question.

As to the repetition of ὑμᾶς, see Matthiae, p. 1031, and on Colossians 2:13; comp. Soph. O. C. 1278, and Reisig in loc.


Whether ἔν τε τοῖς δεσμοῖςεὐαγγ. should be connected with the preceding διὰ τὸ ἔχειν με ἐν τῇ καρδίᾳ ὑμᾶς (Chrysostom, Erasmus, Castalio, Luther, and many; also Huther), or with συγκ. κ.τ.λ. which follows (Beza, Calvin, Calovius, Cornelius a Lapide, Storr, Flatt, Lachmann, van Hengel, Tischendorf, Wiesinger, Ewald, Weiss, Hofmann, and others), cannot be determined. Still the former, as of a less periodic character, is more in harmony with the fervent tone of feeling. Besides, the repetition of ὑμᾶς betrays a break in the flow of thought after τ. εὐαγγ.

Php 1:7. δίκαιον. = our “right” or “natural”.—τοῦτο φρονεῖν ὑπ. ὑμ. Not “think this concerning you,” but “have this care on your behalf”; cf. chap. Php 4:10 τὸ ὑπὲρ ἐμοῦ φρονεῖν. τοῦτο of course refers to the finishing in them of God’s “good work”. φρ. seems always to keep in view the direction which thought (of a practical kind) takes. ὑπέρ usually has the sense of “interest in” (so Lft[50]).—διὰ τὸ κ.τ.λ. Paul’s only use of διά with infin.—ἐν τ. καρδίᾳ. Perhaps it is best (with Zahn) to take κ. here not so much as the seat of the softer feelings, but rather as the abode of the stronger thoughts, resolutions, etc. A regular Greek usage. Cf. 1 Corinthians 2:9, 2 Corinthians 3:15; 2 Corinthians 4:6 et al. Thus the whole expression would almost be equiv. to “I know that you,” etc.; cf. ἄσβεστον ὑμῶν περιφέρω τὴν μνήμην (Thdrt[51]). His love is expressed in the next verse.—Evidently ἔν τε τοῖς δεσμ. κ.τ.λ. goes with the following clause, for it is much more natural to suppose a break at the first ὑμᾶς, which is resumed by the second. On ἐν before τ. ἀπολ. see crit. note. Paul separates here (so also Wohl[52]) between his δεσμοί and his ἀπολογία, which makes up one idea with βεβαίωσις. It seems to us clear that this ἀπολ. marks a crisis in his circumstances of which the influence is seen all through the Epistle; cf., e.g., Php 1:19; Php 1:25, chap. Php 2:23-24. Ought it not to be taken in its ordinary judicial sense of a defence against a regular charge? (as against Lft[53] and Moule, CT[54], who refer ἀπ. and βεβ. to Paul’s missionary work at Rome, and Hpt[55], who thinks of Paul’s whole activity in refuting opponents, both public and private). The correctness of this view receives strong confirmation from Dsm[56] (BS[57], p. 100 ff.), who shows that Paul, like the Translators of the LXX, was well acquainted with the technical sense of βεβαίωσις (Lat. evictio), the obligation under which the seller came to the buyer to guarantee against all claims his right to what he had bought. So Paul’s defence before the emperor is a guarantee of the Gospel, a warrant of its value and claims. For ἀπολ. see 2 Timothy 4:16. “My defence and confirmation of the Gospel.”—συνκ. μ. τ. χάρ. χάρις here must be the great central gift of God’s grace, which Paul always keeps in the foreground. Cf. 1 Corinthians 15:10, χάριτι δὲ Θεοῦ εἰμὶ ὅ εἰμι, καὶ ἡ χάρις αὐτοῦ ἡ εἰς ἐμὲ οὐ κενὴ ἐγενήθη. There is no need to limit it to the grace of apostleship or to that granted to him in his trials and sufferings. Their love and kindness towards him and his great work, even at the darkest moments in his career, are proof enough that they share along with him in the grace of God. It is probably better to separate μου from χάριτος. [J. Weiss (Th. LZ[58], 1899, col. 263) would read χρείας, comparing chap. Php 2:25, Php 4:16, Romans 12:13. Certainly this would give good sense and be more pointed.]

[50] Lightfoot.

[51]hdrt. Theodoret.

[52]ohl. Wohlenberg.

[53] Lightfoot.

[54] Cambridge Greek Testament.

[55] Haupt.

[56] Deissmann (BS. = Bibelstudien, NBS. = Neue Bibelstudien).

[57] Bibelstudien

[58] Theologische Literaturzeitung.

7. meet] Lit., and better, just, right.

for me] The pronoun is emphatic in the Greek; “for me, whatever may be right for others.”

to think this] Better, to be of this mind, to feel the thankfulness and joy described above (Php 1:3-4). The Greek verb (a favourite with St Paul) almost always denotes not an articulate act of thought but a “state of mind.” See, for some passages where this remark is important, Romans 8:5-7; Romans 8:27; Romans 12:3; Romans 12:16; below, Php 3:15; Php 3:19; Colossians 3:2. For another shade of meaning see Php 4:10, and note.

of you] R.V., “on behalf of you.” His joyful thanks were given not only “about” them but “on behalf” of them, as being an element in intercessory worship. But the usage of the Greek preposition allows either rendering.

because, &c.] Such feelings are specially right for him, because of the intimacy of affectionate intercourse which has brought him into living contact with the glow of their spiritual life.

I have you in my heart] The Greek admits the rendering (A.V. and R.V., margins) “you have me in your heart.” But the following context favours the text.—For the warm thought, cp. 2 Corinthians 5:12; 2 Corinthians 6:11; 2 Corinthians 7:3; 1 Thessalonians 2:17.

in my bonds] The first allusion in the Epistle to imprisonment. Here again the grammar leaves two explanations open. Grammatically, the Apostle may say either that he has them in his heart both in his bonds and in his advocacy of the Gospel; or that in both these experiences they are partners of his grace. But the latter is the far more probable. There is something artificial in the statement that he carried them in his heart both in his imprisonment and in his work; for to him the two experiences would run up into one. But it would be natural for the Philippians (see next note but one) to isolate the two experiences of the Apostle in thought and sympathy.

the defence and confirmation] The two words are linked, in the Greek, into one idea. “Defence”:—Greek, apologia. For the word, see Acts 20:1; Acts 25:16; below, 16; and esp. 1 Peter 3:15. Unlike our word “apology,” in its every-day use, it means the statement of a good case against an accuser. Acts 28:17-23 shews us St Paul “apologizing” in his Roman prison.—The early “Apologies” for Christianity, e.g. by Justin and Tertullian (cent. 2), are apologies in this sense.

ye all are partakers of my grace] This has been explained to mean that they too knew by experience the power of grace under imprisonment and in evangelistic work. But we have no reason to think that “all” (if indeed any) of the Philippian converts had been imprisoned at this date. The natural meaning is that their sympathy, and active assistance (Php 4:10-19), had so united them with both the bearing and doing of the Apostle that in this sense they were bound with him, and worked with him, and felt the power of God with him.—The word “grace” here (as in Romans 1:5; Ephesians 3:2; Ephesians 3:8) may refer to the gracious gift to him of apostolic work and trial, rather than to the internal Divine power for service. In this case, still more plainly, the Philippians were partners in “his grace.”—A closer rendering of the Greek is, copartners of my grace as you all are.

Php 1:7. Καθὼς, even as) He explains the reason why he speaks so kindly as to the Philippians.—δίκαιον, just) I find just reasons in my own case, from the relationship of faith, and these reasons are not trifling. I am both justly bound by them, and demand them as a right.—φρονεῖν) to think.—διὰ, for this reason, because) This is the connection: I have you in my heart as partakers of grace (2 Corinthians 7:3), and long for you, and this not merely from natural affection, but from devotedness to Jesus Christ; hence I clearly perceive, that it is rather the Lord Himself who has the same affection for you, and He will carry on the work from the beginning to its termination.—δεσμοῖςἀπολογίᾳ, in my bonds—in defence) A Hendiadys [My bonds in defence of the Gospel]. Bonds do not restrain my love.—ἀπολογίᾳ, in defence) The Romans brought accusations against the Gospel.—βεβαιώσει, in confirmation) This is something more than a defence.—τοῦ εὐαγγελίου, of the Gospel) by which grace is announced.—συγκοινωνοὺςὑμᾶς ὄντας) He said above, you; therefore here is the accusative for the genitive, as Acts 7:21, where see the note.

Verse 7. - Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all. It is meet; rather, just, right. To think this; to entertain this confidence concerning you. Because I have you in my heart; or, because you have me in your heart. But the order of the words, and ver. 8, make the first rendering the more probable. His love for them increases his confidence. Inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel. These words may be taken with the preceding, "I have you in my heart during my imprisonment and defense." So Chrysostom, whose words are very striking: Οὕτω γάρ ἐστι τυραννικὸν ὁ ἔρως ὁ πνευματικὸς ὡς μηδενὶ παραχωρεῖν καιρῷ. But it is, perhaps, more natural to take them with the following. Ye all are partakers of my grace; rather, ye all are partakers with me of the grace. They were partakers of the grace of God given to him in his bonds and in his work. The like grace was given to them both for the passive and active sides of the Christian life - both in endurance of suffering and in propagating the gospel. Thus there seems to be no reference in the words "defense and confirmation" to his public defense before Caesar (which probably had not yet taken place), but generally to his work of preaching the gospel, which was both apologetic, meeting the objections of adversaries, and aggressive, asserting the truth. Philippians 1:7Even as (καθώς)

The reason for being confident (Philippians 1:6).

Defense (ἀπολογία)

See on 1 Peter 3:15.

Confirmation (βεβαιώσει)

Only here and Hebrews 6:16. The kindred verb βεβαιόω to confirm, occurs frequently, as Romans 15:8; 1 Corinthians 1:8, etc.

Partakers of my grace (συγκοινωνούς μοῦ τῆς χάριτος)

Better, as Rev., partakers with me of grace. Lit., the grace, either the divine endowment which enabled them both to suffer bonds, and to defend and establish the Gospel, or the loving favor of God, which confers suffering and activity alike as a boon. The two may be combined. Compare Philippians 1:29.

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