The Advance of the Gospel
12 I want you to know, brothers,1 that what has happened to me has really xserved to advance the gospel, 13 so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard2 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 word3 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.
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.
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’s1 zproven worth, how aas a son2 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 died3 ifor the work of Christ, risking his life jto complete what was lacking in your service to me.
3 For owe are the circumcision, pwho worship qby the Spirit of God1 and rglory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh— 4 sthough I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: 5 tcircumcised on the eighth day, uof the people of Israel, vof the tribe of Benjamin, ua Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, wa Pharisee; 6 xas to zeal, ya persecutor of the church; zas to righteousness under the law,2 blameless. 7 But awhatever gain I had, bI counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of cthe surpassing worth of dknowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I ehave suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having fa righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but gthat which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— 10 hthat I may know him and ithe power of his resurrection, and jmay share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 that by any means possible I may kattain the resurrection from the dead.
Straining Toward the Goal
12 Not that I have already lobtained this or mam already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: nforgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for othe prize of the upward pcall of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are qmature think this way, and if in anything ryou think otherwise, sGod will reveal that also to you. 16 Only tlet us hold true to what we have attained.