“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now.” (Philippians 1:3-5)
This poignant letter was written to a church that Paul founded early in his ministry to the Gentiles (Acts 16:12-15). He endured challenging opposition there, followed for days by a demon-possessed young girl, tossed into prison by an angry business community, beaten and locked immobile into wooden stocks (Acts 16:16-24).
Yet in that dark midnight, while Paul and Silas sang the hymns of the faith, God struck the jail with an earthquake and opened both the chains and the doors of the prison. The head jailor became converted, and along with the successful businesswoman Lydia, the seed of a flourishing church was planted (Acts 16:25-34).
It is to these “saints” and the “bishops and…
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