Surprise Ending

Scripture Reading — Philippians 4:21-22

All God’s people here send you greetings, especially those who belong to Caesar’s household. — Philippians 4:22

Paul wrote the letter of Romans to people living in the shadow of the Roman leader, Caesar, without once mentioning his name. Caesar, of course, fancied himself as the “God and Lord” of the Roman Empire. It said so on most Roman coins. Yet throughout Romans, Paul undercut those idolatrous claims by pointing to the real Lord of lords and King of kings, Jesus Christ!

As we noted earlier this month, Paul was in prison in Rome when he wrote this letter to the Philippians. He was in prison because he had been accused falsely of wrongdoing as a missionary. And because he was a Roman citizen, he had appealed that his case be judged by Caesar, so off to Rome he went. (See Acts 21-28.)

Now, at the end of this letter, how delightful it is to hear that among the people who had become Christians in Rome and were sending their greetings to Philippi, some were part of “Caesar’s household.”

What? Jesus had some of his own people living right under Caesar’s nose?! Yes he did.

“The one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world,” the apostle John once wrote (1 John 4:4). Few verses bring that point home more vividly than this tiny detail near the end of Philippians. Though he claimed to be all-powerful, Caesar had no power over the advance of our Lord Jesus, not even in his own house! Praise God!


For the boundless power and reach of your rule, Lord Jesus, we give you thanks and praise forever! Amen.


Devotion topics: God, God's Plan, Life, Christian Life, Following Jesus