Philippians 2:25 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Philippians 2:25, NIV: "But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs."

Philippians 2:25, ESV: "I have thought it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, and your messenger and minister to my need,"

Philippians 2:25, KJV: "Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants."

Philippians 2:25, NASB: "But I thought it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger and minister to my need;"

Philippians 2:25, NLT: "Meanwhile, I thought I should send Epaphroditus back to you. He is a true brother, co-worker, and fellow soldier. And he was your messenger to help me in my need."

Philippians 2:25, CSB: "But I considered it necessary to send you Epaphroditus--my brother, coworker, and fellow soldier, as well as your messenger and minister to my need--"

What does Philippians 2:25 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The letter to the Philippians was delivered by the hands of Epaphroditus. This man is given five titles in this brief verse. First, Paul calls him "my brother," indicating he was a fellow believer in Christ.

Second, Paul calls him my "fellow worker," a title emphasizing his diligent efforts to serve Christ in ministry with Paul.

Third, Paul called him his "fellow soldier." Paul sometimes used the word picture of a soldier to emphasize a person's faithful, dedicated service to Christ. The territory Paul ministered to was mostly controlled by the Roman Empire, which made an effort to show off their military might. Soldiers would have been a common sight, and therefore a useful analogy.

Fourth, Paul calls him "your messenger," likely referring to his role of bringing this letter and perhaps verbal information to the Philippian believers. He had also come to Paul, from Philippi, at some point in the past.

Fifth, Paul refers to him as a "minister to my need." Epaphroditus had served Paul on many occasions, especially during his critical time under Roman house arrest. He also brought financial gifts to Paul from the Philippians during this time, as mentioned in Philippians 4:18. He may well have been a leader at the Philippian church. We have little other information about the man, as he is mentioned only in this letter to the Philippians.