12 But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel,
13 So that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ;
14 And most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
know (v.12) = knowledge gained from experience. Paul wanted the Philippians to learn from his experience.
things which happened (v.12) — Paul’s imprisonment— his present circumstances. Should read “things dominating me.”
actually (v.12) — contrary to what might have been expected
“Have fallen out” is literally, “have come to result.” The use of “rather” [actually] tells us that the Philippians were thinking that Paul’s ministry was being curtailed. The word “furtherance” is from a Greek word which means “to cut before” and is thought to have been used of an army of pioneer wood cutters which precedes the regular army, cutting a road through an impenetrable forest, thus making possible the pioneer advance of the latter into regions where otherwise it could not have gone. Paul assures the Philippian saints that his circumstances have not only failed to curtail his missionary work, but they have advanced it, and not only that, they have brought about a pioneer advance in regions where otherwise it could not have gone. — Philippians in the Greek New Testament, by Kenneth S. Wuest, pages 39-40.
my chains are in Christ (v.13) — It became evident to all that Paul was in prison for preaching the gospel, not for political or legal reasons.
palace guard (v.13) — lit. “the Praetorian Guard” — referring to the guards of the imperial palace, so, the soldiers guarding the emperor.
to all the rest (v.13) — to all who were in the vicinity of the palace
most of the brethren (v.14) — There were some believers too timid to witness, but most, seeing Paul’s testimony in prison, were challenged to speak the gospel, and more so for seeing Paul’s witness in prison than they would have been if he had come freely to Rome.
Verse 14 should read “Many brethren, being confident in the Lord (emphasis) through my bonds …”
speak (v.14) — personal conversation rather than preaching
word (v.14) — Word of God, the gospel (2 Timothy 2:9)