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Disunity and Strife (1:27-2:18)

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Chapter Summary

Little connection has been sought with 1:12-26 because the scholarly consensus usually assigns it a biographical nature, or with 2:19-30 because it deals with Paul's travel plans and his arrangements for the coming of two of his co-workers. This chapter shows that 1:27-2:18 is indeed to be seen in connection with the preceding text. It demonstrates that from the end of the introduction Paul is following one basic theme and argument. The chapter gives more information and insight into the reality of division in the Philippian church and supports the suggestion of Paul's involvement in the dispute. The cause of the Philippians' immediate suffering is mentioned in 1:28. Spiritual arrogance is combined with ecclesiastical and secular status to account for the dynamics of the Philippian discord. This disunity is dangerous not only in light of the opponents, but even more because it betrays the real nature of corporate Christian living.

Keywords: disunity; Paul's travel plans; Philippian church; secular status

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