Greetings from Paul (Day 1)

Read Philippians 1:1-2
   This is a personal letter to the Philippians, not intended for general circulation to all the churches, as was the letter to the Ephesians. Paul wanted to thank the believers for helping him when he had need. He also wanted to tell them why he could be full of joy despite his imprisonment and upcoming trial. In this uplifting letter, Paul counseled the Philippians about humility and unity and warned them about potential problems. 
   On Paul’s first missionary journey, he visited towns close to his headquarters in Antioch in Syria. On his second and third journeys, he traveled even farther. Because of the great distances between the congregations that Paul had founded, he could no longer personally oversee them all. Thus, he was compelled to write letters to teach and encourage the believers. Fortunately, Paul had a staff of volunteers who personally delivered these letters and often remained with the congregations for a while to teach and encourage them. 
   The Roman colony of Philippi was located in modern day northern Greece. Philip II of Macedon took the town from ancient Thrace in about 357 B.C., enlarged and strengthened it, and gave it his name. this thriving commercial center sat at the crossroads between Europe and Asia. In about A.D. 50, Paul, Silas, Timothy, and Luke crossed the Aegean Sea from Asia Minor and landed at Philippi (Acts 16). The church in Philippi consisted mostly of Gentile believers. Because they were not familiar with the Old Testament, Paul did not specifically quote any Old Testament passages in his letter. 
   Elders and deacons led the early Christian churches. The qualifications and duties of the elders are explained in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9. The qualifications and duties of deacons are spelled out in 1 Timothy 3:8-13.