Paul and Timothy, bond-servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, including the overseers and deacons.
— Philippians 1:1
The church in Philippi was raised up in a very pure manner. As described in Acts 16:11–40, Paul preached the gospel to a woman named Lydia who sold purple-dyed goods. Lydia believed in the Lord and was baptized, she and her household. She invited Paul to stay at her home.
Satan then took the opportunity to send a demon-possessed woman to follow Paul for many days, declaring that Paul was proclaiming “the way of salvation.” Although she spoke the truth, Paul was bothered and cast the evil spirit out of her. Her masters, realizing that they had lost their means of income, had Paul and Silas beaten and put in prison.
Rather than feeling despair after being imprisoned, Paul and Silas stayed up late praying and singing hymns of praise to God. Suddenly a great earthquake freed all the prisoners in the jail. When the jailer saw this, he was ready to kill himself, but Paul stopped him, saying, “Do not harm yourself, for we are all here!” The grateful jailer asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Paul’s preaching to the jailer was so pure and simple: “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:31).
Adapted from Philippians: “That I May Gain Christ,” pages 11-12.
Tomorrow: “A Pure Beginning” (2)