- Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all God's holy people in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons:
- Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
- I thank my God every time I remember you.
- In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy
- because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now,
- being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
- It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God's grace with me.
- God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.
- And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight,
- so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ,
- filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Paul's Chains Advance the Gospel
- Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel.
- As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ.
- And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.
- It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill.
- The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel.
- The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains.
- But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice. Yes, and I will continue to rejoice,
- for I know that through your prayers and God's provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance.
- I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.
- For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.
- If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know!
- I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far;
- but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body.
- Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith,
- so that through my being with you again your boasting in Christ Jesus will abound on account of me.
Life Worthy of the Gospel
- Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit, striving together as one for the faith of the gospel
- without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you. This is a sign to them that they will be destroyed, but that you will be saved—and that by God.
- For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him,
- since you are going through the same struggle you saw I had, and now hear that I still have.
- The word 'deacons' refers here to Christians designated to serve with the overseers/elders of the church in a variety of ways; similarly in Romans 16:1 and 1 Tim. 3:8,12.
- The Greek word for 'brothers and sisters' ('adelphoi') refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in verse 14; and in 3:1, 13, 17; 4:1, 8, 21.
- Or 'whole palace'
- Or 'vindication'; or 'salvation'
- Or 'in one spirit'