1:1 Paulus et Timotheus, servi Jesu Christi, omnibus sanctis in Christo Jesu, qui sunt Philippis, cum episcopis et diaconibus. [n. 3]
1:1 Paul and Timothy, the servants of Jesus Christ: to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons. [n. 3]
1:2 Gratia vobis, et pax a Deo Patre nostro, et Domino Jesu Christo. [n. 7]
1:2 Grace be unto you and peace, from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. [n. 7]
1:3 Gratias ago Deo meo in omni memoria vestri, [n. 8]
1:3 I give thanks to my God in every remembrance of you: [n. 8]
1:4 semper in cunctis orationibus meis pro omnibus vobis, cum gaudio deprecationem faciens,
1:4 Always in all my prayers making supplication for you all with joy:
1:5 super communicatione vestra in Evangelio Christi a prima die usque nunc. [n. 10]
1:5 For your communication in the Gospel of Christ, from the first day unto now. [n. 10]
1:6 Confidens hoc ipsum, quia qui coepit in vobis opus bonum, perficiet usque in diem Christi Jesu: [n. 12]
1:6 Being confident of this very thing: that he who began a good work in you will perfect it unto the day of Christ Jesus. [n. 12]
1:7 sicut est mihi justum hoc sentire pro omnibus vobis: eo quod habeam vos in corde, et in vinculis meis, et in defensione, et confirmatione Evangelii, socios gaudii mei omnes vos esse. [n. 13]
1:7 As it is right for me to think this for you all, because I hold you in my heart; and that, in my bonds and in the defense and confirmation of the Gospel, you all are partakers of my joy. [n. 13]
3. Dividitur autem haec epistola in salutationem et epistolarem narrationem. Secunda, ibi gratias ago, et cetera.
3. This letter is divided into a greeting and the letter’s message, which begins at I give thanks.
Circa primum tria facit: quia
In the greeting he does three things:
primo describuntur personae salutantes;
first, the persons who send the greeting are described;
secundo personae salutatae, ibi omnibus sanctis, etc.;
second, the persons greeted, at to all the saints;
tertio bona optata, ibi gratia vobis, et cetera.
third, the good things he wishes them, at grace be unto you.
Circa primum, primo ponuntur personae salutantes;
In regard to the first he does two things: first, he mentions the persons who send the greeting;
secundo earum conditio, ibi servi, et cetera.
second, their condition, at the servants.
4. Circa primum, primo ponitur persona principalis, cum dicit Paulus. Et interpretatur Paulus quasi modicus, in quo notatur eius humilitas. Is. LX, 22: minimus erit in mille, et parvus in gentem fortissimam.
4. In regard to the first he mentions, first of all, the principal person, when he says, Paul, which means ‘small.’ In this he indicates his humility: the least one shall become a clan, and the smallest one a mighty nation (Isa 60:22).
Secundo, ibi et Timotheus, ponitur persona adiuncta, quia fuerat eorum praedicator. Infra II, 20: neminem enim habeo tam unanimem, qui sincera affectione pro vobis sollicitus sit.
Second, the co-sender, when he says, and Timothy, because he was their preacher: for I have no man so of the same mind, who with sincere affection is solicitous for you (Phil 2:20).
5. Deinde cum dicit servi, etc., ponitur conditio eorum. II Cor. IV, 5: non enim nosmetipsos praedicamus, sed Iesum Christum Dominum nostrum: nos autem servos vestros per Iesum, et cetera.
5. Then when he says, servants of Jesus Christ, he states their condition: for what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants through Jesus (2 Cor 4:5).
Sed contra Io. XV, 15: iam non dicam vos servos, et cetera.
But this seems to conflict with John: no longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing (John 15:15).
Respondeo. Duplex est servitus secundum duplicem timorem. Timor enim poenae causat malam servitutem, et de hac intelligitur dictum praemissum Io. XV, 6. Timor vero castus causat servitutem reverentiae, et de hac loquitur Apostolus hic.
I answer that there are two kinds of servitude, corresponding to the two kinds of fear. Fear of punishment causes evil servitude, and this is the kind meant in the above text from John. But chaste fear causes reverential servitude, which is the kind the Apostle has in mind.
6. Personae salutatae sunt omnes de ecclesia Philippensi. Et, primo, minores. Unde dicit omnibus sanctis qui sunt Philippis, quae est civitas quam Philippus condidit; et dicit sanctis, et hoc propter Baptismum. Rom. c. VI, 3: quicumque baptizati sumus in Christo, in morte ipsius baptizati sumus.
6. The persons greeted are the saints of the church in Philippi: first, the lesser ones; hence he says, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, which is a city founded by Philip. He calls them saints on account of their baptism: do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? (Rom 6:3).
Maiores autem tangit, dicens cum episcopis, et cetera. Quaestio est quare minores praeponit maioribus? Quia prius est populus, quam praelatus. Ez. XXXIV, 2: nonne greges pascuntur a pastoribus? Greges enim pascendi sunt a pastoribus, non e converso.
He includes the greater ones when he says, with the bishops and deacons. But why does he mention the lesser ones before the greater? Because the people are prior to the prelate: should not shepherds feed the sheep? (Ezek 34:2). For the flocks are to be fed by the shepherds, and not vice versa.
Item cur intermittit presbyteros?
But why does he not mention the priests?
Respondeo. Dicendum est quod comprehenduntur cum episcopis, quia in una civitate non sunt plures episcopi. Unde dicens in plurali, dat intelligere etiam presbyteros. Et tamen est alius ordo, quia ex ipso Evangelio hoc legitur quod post designationem duodecim apostolorum (quorum personas gerunt episcopi), designavit septuaginta duos discipulos, quorum locum sacerdotes tenent. Dionysius etiam distinguit episcopos et sacerdotes. Sed in principio, licet ordines fuerint distincti, non tamen nomina ordinum; unde hic comprehendit presbyteros cum episcopis.
I answer that they are included with the bishops, because there are not a number of bishops in a city; hence when he puts it in the plural, he means to include priests. Yet it is a distinct order, because we read in the Gospel that after appointing twelve apostles (whose persons the bishops manifest), He appointed seventy-two disciples, whose place the priests hold. Dionysius also distinguished bishops from priests. But in the beginning, although the orders were distinct, there were not distinct names for the orders; hence here he includes priests with bishops.
7. Deinde ponit bona optata, ibi gratia, et cetera. Et sunt duo quae includunt omnia. Primum est gratia Dei remittens peccata. Eph. II, 8: gratia salvati estis, et cetera. Ultimum est pax hominis. Ps. CXLVII, 14: qui posuit fines tuos pacem, et cetera. Et per consequens optat bona media, et hoc a Deo Patre. Iac. I, 17: omne datum optimum, et omne donum perfectum de sursum est, descendens a Patre luminum. Item, per meritum humilitatis Christi, et ideo addit et Domino Iesu Christo. Io. I, v. 17: gratia et veritas per Iesum Christum facta est. Eph. II, 14: ipse enim est pax nostra, et cetera.
7. Then he mentions the good things he desires for them when he says, grace be unto you and peace. These two goods include everything: first, there is God’s grace remitting sins: for by grace you have been saved through faith (Eph 2:8); lastly, there is man’s peace: he makes peace in your borders (Ps 147:14). Consequently, he wishes them all the good things between the two: and this, from God our Father: every good endowment and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights (Jas 1:17), and by the merit of Christ’s humanity; hence he says, and from the Lord Jesus Christ: grace and truth came through Jesus Christ (John 1:17); for he is our peace, who has made us both one (Eph 2:14).
8. Consequenter ponit epistolarem narrationem. Et
8. Then he begins the letter’s message,
circa hoc duo facit, quia
in which he does two things:
primo agit gratias de praeteritis;
first, he gives thanks for past benefits;
secundo hortatur ad profectum in futurum, ibi scire autem vos volo, et cetera.
second, he urges them to continue making progress, at now, brethren, I desire that you (Phil 1:12).
Circa primum, primo praemittit gratiarum actionem pro eis;
In regard to the first: first, he gives thanks for them;
secundo materiam eius, ibi super communicatione, et cetera.
second, he mentions the subject matter, at for your communication.
9. Gratias autem agit super adiuncto gaudio et deprecatione. Et ideo haec tria tangens, dicit gratias Deo nostro. Gratias agere, est recognoscere gratiam sibi factam. I Thess. ult.: in omnibus gratias agite. In omni memoria vestra, quia in eis nihil occurrit Apostolo, quod non esset dignum gratiarum actione. Et hoc est valde magnum. Prov. X, 7: memoria iusti cum laudibus, et cetera. Pro omnibus. Is. LX, 21: populus autem tuus, omnes iusti in perpetuum, et cetera. Agit ergo gratias pro eorum bono, orationem et deprecationem pro custodia: totum tamen cum gaudio. I Reg. XII, 23: absit autem a me hoc peccatum in Domino, ut cessem orare pro vobis.
9. First, therefore, he expresses thanks along with joy and a prayer. And so, touching these three things, he says, I give thanks to my God. To give thanks is to acknowledge a favor conferred on oneself: give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thess 5:18). In every remembrance of you, because in regard to them nothing occurred to the Apostle that was not worthy of thanksgiving; and this is very great: the memory of the righteous is a blessing (Prov 10:7). For you all: your people shall all be righteous; they shall possess the land forever (Isa 60:21). He gives thanks for their blessings, he makes prayers for their protection, and all of this with joy: far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you (1 Sam 12:23).
10. Deinde cum dicit super communicatione, etc., tangit de materia trium praedictorum.
10. Then when he says, for your communication in the Gospel, he touches on the matter of the three things mentioned above.
Et primo ponit materiam gratiarum actionis;
First, he mentions the reason for his thanksgiving;
secundo gaudii de futuris, ibi confidens, etc.;
second, for his joy in things to come, at being confident;