Philippians 1:28 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Philippians 1:28, NIV: without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you. This is a sign to them that they will be destroyed, but that you will be saved--and that by God.

Philippians 1:28, ESV: and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God.

Philippians 1:28, KJV: And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God.

Philippians 1:28, NASB: and in no way alarmed by your opponents—which is a sign of destruction for them, but of salvation for you, and this too, from God.

Philippians 1:28, NLT: Don't be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself.

Philippians 1:28, CSB: not being frightened in any way by your opponents. This is a sign of destruction for them, but of your salvation--and this is from God.

What does Philippians 1:28 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul encourages Christians to live with great courage, rather than in fear. The "opponents" he speaks of are likely the false teachers and antagonists mentioned in Acts 16. These enemies opposed Christianity—and Christians—in Philippi. Even though the Philippian believers were not facing the same level of persecution as Paul, they did face opposition in other ways. Christians throughout history have experienced every level of intimidation, and different levels of oppression. Those who read Paul's words in modern, free countries should realize how easy it is—relatively speaking—to be a follower of Jesus, as compared to the first century.

When believers live without fear in the face of threats, it serves as a form of evangelism. It emphasizes the confidence Christians have in the truth, which should be seen as a warning to those who reject their message. God's salvation can give great courage to believers. At the same time, the courage of believers often reminds unbelievers of the uncertainty of their own afterlife. This partly explains why Christianity spreads so well under persecution: only the true believers claim Christ, and true belief, lived out in love, is a powerful testimony.