Who was the apostle Philip?

Author: BibleAsk Team

The Apostle Philip

Philip, a name of Greek origin meaning “lover of horses,” holds a significant place in the biblical narrative. His journey unfolds across the pages of the New Testament, where he emerges as a prominent figure in the early Christian community. This comprehensive exploration will delve into the life, teachings, and contributions of this disciple, shedding light on his pivotal role in spreading the message of Christianity.

Early Life and Calling

This disciple’s introduction in the New Testament is found in the Gospel of John. In John 1:43-46, we learn about his initial encounter with Jesus. He, a native of Bethsaida, is called by Jesus to follow Him. This moment marks the beginning of a transformative journey that would lead the disciple to become one of the Twelve Apostles.

The Twelve Apostles

Philip is consistently listed among the Twelve Apostles in the Gospel accounts (Matthew 10:2-4; Mark 3:14-19; Luke 6:12-16). As a chosen disciple, he witnessed Jesus’ miracles, heard His teachings, and shared in the unique experiences that shaped the foundation of the Christian faith.

The Feeding of the 5000

One of the most well-known accounts involving this disciple is the miraculous feeding of the 5000. In John 6:5-7, Jesus poses a question to him, testing his faith. The disciple’s response reveals a pragmatic concern about the practicality of providing food for such a large crowd with limited resources. This event serves as a lesson in trust and reliance on divine power.

His Request: “Lord, Show Us the Father”

In John 14:8-9, the disciple makes a profound request to Jesus, saying, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.” Jesus responds with a revelation of His divine nature, emphasizing the unity between Himself and the Father. This interaction highlights the disciple’s desire for a deeper understanding of the divine and Jesus’ role in revealing God to humanity.

His Role in the Great Commission

After the resurrection, Philip plays a crucial role in the fulfillment of the Great Commission and takes an active role in spreading Christianity to new regions. The last mention of him is as one of the believers that united in Jerusalem to pray after the Lord’s ascension (Acts 1:13).


Tradition says that Philip went to Phrygia (in modern-day Turkey) to preach the gospel of Christ and was martyred there in Hierapolis.


Philip’s journey in the Bible encompasses various dimensions of discipleship, faith, and evangelism. From his initial calling as one of the Twelve Apostles to his pivotal role in the expansion of the early Christian community, his story provides valuable insights for believers today. His encounters with Jesus and acts of evangelism collectively contribute to inspire and guide those who seek to follow the teachings of Christ.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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