1 Paul and Timothy, servants1 of Christ Jesus,
2 dGrace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
3 eI thank my God fin all my remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, 5 gbecause of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. 6 And I am sure of this, that he who began ha good work in you iwill bring it to completion at jthe day of Jesus Christ. 7 It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you kin my heart, for you are all lpartakers with me of grace,4 both min my imprisonment and in nthe defense and confirmation of the gospel. 8 For oGod is my witness, phow I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And it is my prayer that qyour love may abound more and more, rwith knowledge and all discernment, 10 so that you may approve what is excellent, sand so be pure and blameless tfor the day of Christ, 11 filled uwith the fruit of righteousness that comes vthrough Jesus Christ, wto the glory and praise of God.
The Advance of the Gospel
12 I want you to know, brothers,5 that what has happened to me has really xserved to advance the gospel, 13 so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard6 and yto all the rest that zmy imprisonment is for Christ. 14 And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold ato speak the word7 without fear.
15 bSome indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. 16 The latter do it out of love, cknowing that I am put here for dthe defense of the gospel. 17 The former proclaim Christ eout of selfish ambition, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment. 18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice.
To Live Is Christ
Yes, and I will rejoice, 19 for I know that fthrough your prayers and gthe help of hthe Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20 as it is my eager expectation and hope ithat I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full jcourage now as always Christ kwill be honored in my body, lwhether by life or by death. 21 For to me mto live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 nI am hard pressed between the two. My desire is oto depart and pbe with Christ, for that is far better. 24 But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. 25 qConvinced of this, rI know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your sprogress and tjoy in the faith, 26 so that in me uyou may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.
27 Only vlet your manner of life be wworthy8 of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you xthat you are standing firm in one spirit, with yone mind zstriving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is aa clear sign to them of their destruction, but bof your salvation, and that from God. 29 For cit has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also bsuffer for his sake, 30 engaged in the same dconflict that eyou saw I had and now hear that I still have.
Christ’s Example of Humility
2 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from flove, any gparticipation in the Spirit, any haffection and sympathy, 2 icomplete my joy by being jof the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from kselfish ambition or lconceit, but in mhumility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you nlook not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 oHave this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,1 6 pwho, though he was in qthe form of God, did not count equality with God ra thing to be grasped,2 7 but semptied himself, by taking the form of a tservant,3 ubeing born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by vbecoming obedient to the point of death, weven death on a cross. 9 xTherefore yGod has zhighly exalted him and bestowed on him athe name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus bevery knee should bow, cin heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and devery tongue confess that Jesus Christ is eLord, to the glory of God the Father.
Lights in the World
12 Therefore, my beloved, fas you have always gobeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for hit is God who works in you, both to will and to work for ihis good pleasure.
14 Do all things jwithout grumbling or kdisputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, lchildren of God mwithout blemish nin the midst of oa crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine pas lights in the world, 16 holding fast to qthe word of life, so that in rthe day of Christ sI may be proud that tI did not run in vain or labor in vain. 17 Even if I am to be upoured out as a drink offering upon vthe sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all. 18 Likewise you also should be glad and rejoice with me.
Timothy and Epaphroditus
19 I hope in the Lord Jesus wto send Timothy to you soon, so that I too may be cheered by news of you. 20 For I have no one xlike him, who will be genuinely concerned for your welfare. 21 For they all yseek their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ. 22 But you know Timothy’s4 zproven worth, how aas a son5 with a father bhe has served with me in the gospel. 23 I hope therefore to send him just as soon as I see how it will go with me, 24 and cI trust in the Lord that shortly I myself will come also.
25 I have thought it necessary to send to you dEpaphroditus my brother and fellow worker and efellow soldier, and your messenger and fminister to my need, 26 for he has been longing for you all and has been distressed because you heard that he was ill. 27 Indeed he was ill, near to death. But God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. 28 I am the more eager to send him, therefore, that you may rejoice at seeing him again, and that I may be less anxious. 29 So greceive him in the Lord with all joy, and hhonor such men, 30 for he nearly died6 ifor the work of Christ, risking his life jto complete what was lacking in your service to me.