2013-10-19 - The Fifth Disciple ~ Philip
The Disciple Series ~ Part 5
The next day, Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, "Follow me." John 1:43 (NIV)
Like several other Disciples, Philip was from the town of Bethsaida, in the region of Galilee. Some scholars speculate that Philip was a disciple of John the Baptist, since he was from the same region. Jesus' call to Philip was simple and effective. Philip, whose occupation is unknown, dropped everything and followed Jesus. The first action Philip performed as a Disciple of Jesus was to go tell Nathanael about the Messiah. (John 1:45)
A notable mention of Philip occurs when Jesus asks Philip a question. John 6:5-7 says, "When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward Him, He said to Philip, 'Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?' He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do." (NIV) Philip's answer was that it would take eight months' wages to feed this multitude of people. Jesus took five small loaves of bread and two fish, and then he fed the 5,000 people. Jesus used this occasion to perform a miracle. As a result, Philip learned more about Jesus' supernatural power, and his faith grew stronger.
Philip's last mention in the Bible is in the Book of Acts, as being present at Jesus' Ascension and at Pentecost. Tradition says that Philip was a missionary who preached in Phrygia and Asia Minor. He died as a martyr in Hierapolis in Asia Minor, where he was spreading the Good News about Jesus.
Series to be continued.
Richard Moser, Jr