1Brothers and sisters, you yourselves know what our visit meant to you, and that it wasn't wasted! 2You'll recall that after having had much trouble and bad treatment at Philippi, with the help of God we still dared to share God's good news with you, despite the opposition we faced. 3For what we speak about isn't deceptive, or worthless, or fraudulent.
4On the contrary, we have God's approval for what we say—he's entrusted us with sharing the good news. We don't set out to please people, but God. He's the one who judges our motives. 5As you know, we've never used flattering words. Nor were we covering up some greedy, selfish attitude—as God is our witness! 6We weren't trying to win anybody's praise—not from you, nor anyone else. We could have become a “burden” to you as messengers of Christ, 7but instead we acted kindly among you, like a mother caring for her own children. 8We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not just God's good news, but also our very own selves, because you had become so dear to us.
9Don't you remember, brothers and sisters, all our hard work— working day and night so we wouldn't be a burden to any of you as we shared God's good news with you? 10You yourselves can testify as to how we acted, and God can too—how we treated you believers with a holy attitude, fairly and blamelessly. 11You know how we cared for every one of you like a father caring for his own children. We encouraged you, comforted you, and shared with you our experience 12so that you could live as God would want you to live—the God who calls you to his own kingdom and glory.
13Another thing: we're always thanking God that when you heard and accepted the word of God, you didn't treat it as some human words, but what it truly is, the word of God. This is what is at work in those of you who trust in him. 14The experience you brothers and sisters have had imitates that of God's churches that belong to Christ Jesus in Judaea. Just like your fellow Jewish Christians you suffered as they did at the hands of the Jewish leaders 15who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and chased us out. They don't please God and they are hostile to everyone, 16trying to prevent us from speaking to the other nations#2:16. “Gentiles.” to prevent them from being saved. They're always sinning to the maximum extent, but for them full judgment has arrived!
17Brothers and sisters, since we felt as if we'd experienced a family separation because we hadn't seen you for a while (separated physically though not in spirit), we tried even harder to come and see you again face to face because that's what we wanted to do. 18We really wanted to come and visit you, and I, Paul, tried again and again—but Satan stopped us. 19For what gives us hope, what makes us happy, what we are really proud of as we stand before our Lord Jesus Christ when he comes back—is having you there too! 20You are our pride and joy!