Sharon Wilharm Bible Storyteller

Daughters of Philip

Paul and his missionary companions arrived in Caesarea where Philip the evangelist lived. He was one of the seven deacons chosen to distribute food, but now he was known for his evangelistic work. Acts 21:9 tells us that Philip had four daughters who prophesied.

Paul and his companions stayed with Philip and his daughters for an extended time before heaving back to Jerusalem.

Though we might assume the daughters were merely young women who’d not reached marrying age, the words used for unwed daughters indicates that they had chosen a life of singleness in order to devote themselves more fully to the work of the Lord.

Luke calls them prophetesses. What does that word mean in this context? It, of course, refers to predicting the future, but it also means those who speak and share messages from God. They could have accompanied their father as he traveled around preaching. Perhaps they preached themselves, finding groups of women and sharing with them. They would have had access to both Jews and Gentiles. Imagine the impact they could have had witnessing and sharing with lost women as well as new believers.

We’ll never know the full scope of the influence of Philip’s daughters, but we see in them an example of the roles that women played in the early church. Women were not sitting idly at home while the men were doing all the heavy lifting. Women like Philip’s daughters were actively involved in spreading the gospel and supporting the work of the apostles and missionaries.

Read about the daughters of Philip: Acts 21:7-10

Daughters of Philip Bible story

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