1From Paul and Timothy, slaves of Christ Jesus.
To all those in Philippi who are God’s people in Christ Jesus, along with your supervisors#1.1 Or overseers, bishops and servants.#1.1 Or deacons
2May the grace and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Thanksgiving and prayer
3I thank my God every time I mention you in my prayers. 4I’m thankful for all of you every time I pray, and it’s always a prayer full of joy. 5I’m glad because of the way you have been my partners in the ministry of the gospel from the time you first believed it until now. 6I’m sure about this: the one who started a good work in you will stay with you to complete the job by the day of Christ Jesus. 7I have good reason to think this way about all of you because I keep you in my heart. You are all my partners in God’s grace, both during my time in prison and in the defense and support of the gospel. 8God is my witness that I feel affection for all of you with the compassion of Christ Jesus.
9This is my prayer: that your love might become even more and more rich with knowledge and all kinds of insight. 10I pray this so that you will be able to decide what really matters and so you will be sincere and blameless on the day of Christ. 11I pray that you will then be filled with the fruit of righteousness, which comes from Jesus Christ, in order to give glory and praise to God.
Priority of the gospel
12Brothers and sisters, I want you to know that the things that have happened to me have actually advanced the gospel. 13The whole Praetorian Guard and everyone else knows that I’m in prison for Christ. 14Most of the brothers and sisters have had more confidence through the Lord to speak the word boldly and bravely because of my jail time. 15Some certainly preach Christ with jealous and competitive motives, but others preach with good motives. 16They are motivated by love, because they know that I’m put here to give a defense of the gospel; 17the others preach Christ because of their selfish ambition. They are insincere, hoping to cause me more pain while I’m in prison.
18What do I think about this? Just this: since Christ is proclaimed in every possible way, whether from dishonest or true motives, I’m glad and I’ll continue to be glad. 19I’m glad because I know that this will result in my release through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. 20It is my expectation and hope that I won’t be put to shame in anything. Rather, I hope with daring courage that Christ’s greatness will be seen in my body, now as always, whether I live or die. 21Because for me, living serves Christ and dying is even better. 22If I continue to live in this world, I get results from my work. 23But I don’t know what I prefer. I’m torn between the two because I want to leave this life and be with Christ, which is far better. 24However, it’s more important for me to stay in this world for your sake. 25I’m sure of this: I will stay alive and remain with all of you to help your progress and the joy of your faith, 26and to increase your pride in Christ Jesus through my presence when I visit you again.
Live worthy of the gospel
27Most important, live together in a manner worthy of Christ’s gospel. Do this, whether I come and see you or I’m absent and hear about you. Do this so that you stand firm, united in one spirit and mind as you struggle together to remain faithful to the gospel. 28That way, you won’t be afraid of anything your enemies do. Your faithfulness and courage are a sign of their coming destruction and your salvation, which is from God. 29God has generously granted you the privilege, not only of believing in Christ but also of suffering for Christ’s sake. 30You are having the same struggle that you saw me face and now hear that I’m still facing.