Wednesday 23 February 2011

Todd D. Still on Philippians

Todd D. Still, Philippians & Philemon, The Smyth & Helwys Bible Commentary 27b (Macon: Smyth & Helwys, forthcoming 2011), 256pp., ISBN 9781573120845.

Smyth & Helwys make available an excerpt of this forthcoming commentary by Todd Still on Philippians and Philemon.

After a fair bit of front matter, the excerpt includes the Introduction to Philippians, taking in the city of Philippi, the church at Philippi, and Paul’s letter to the Philippians (looking at the unity of the letter, the reasons for the letter, and the date and place of writing).

Still also includes a section on three recurring themes woven through Philippians:

• Christian Confidence

• Christian Communion and Moral Insight

• Christian Imitation

‘Taken together, then, Paul pens Philippians to encourage the fellowship to stand firm in the gospel (1:27; cf. 3:16) and to call them to embrace and exhibit a Christ-like habit of mind (2:5). The church’s commitment to such aims is to be evinced by its continued fidelity, congregational unity, ethical excellence, and heavenly hope (see esp. 2:1-4, 12-15; 3:7-16; 3:20-21; 4:8-9, 13, 19)’ (17).

And here are the main divisions in his outline of the letter:

Address and Greeting, 1:1-2

Thanksgiving and Prayer, 1:3-11

Paul’s Imprisonment and the Gospel’s Advancement, 1:12-18a

Paul’s Deliverance and Departure, 1:18b-26

Life as Christian Citizens, 1:27-30

Unity through Humility, 2:1-11

Pauline Exhortations in Light of Christ’s Lordship, 2:12-18

Timothy and Epaphroditus: Models of the Gospel, 2:19-30

Transition and Reiteration, 3:1

Paul’s Opponents and Past, 3:2-6

A New Orientation, 3:7-16

Type and Antitype, 3:17–4:1

Miscellaneous Exhortations, 4:2-9

Renewed Concern and Contentment beyond Circumstances, 4:10-20

Concluding Comments, 4:21-23

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