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. Chapter 1.

The apostle and his friends

Salutation (Philippi)

1 FROM PAUL AND TIMOTHY,
servants of Christ Jesus,
to all those of God's people, incorporate in Christ Jesus, who live at Philippi, including their bishops and deacons.

2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul's Prayer for the Philippians

3 I thank my God whenever I think of you; 4 and when I pray for you all, my prayers are always joyful, 5 because of the part you have taken in the work of the Gospel from the first day until now. 6 Of one thing I am certain: the One who started the good work in you will bring it to completion by the Day of Christ Jesus. 7 It is indeed only right that I should feel like this about you all, because you hold me in such affection, and because, when I lie in prison or appear in the dock to vouch for the truth of the Gospel, you all share in the privilege that is mine. [Or: I am justified in taking this view about you all, because I hold you in closest union, as those who, when I lie ... of the Gospel, all share in the privilege that is mine.] 8 God knows how I long for you all, with the deep yearning of Christ Jesus himself. 9 And this is my prayer, that your love may grow ever richer and richer in knowledge and insight of every kind, 10 and may thus bring you the gift of true discrimination. [Or: may teach you by experience what things are most worth while.] Then on the Day of Christ you will be flawless and without blame, 11 reaping the full harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

To Me to Live is Christ

12 Friends, I want you to understand that the work of the Gospel has been helped on, rather than hindered, by this business of mine. 13 My imprisonment in Christ's cause has become common knowledge to all at headquarters [Or: to all the imperial guard; Or: to all at the Residency (Greek: Praetorium).] here, and indeed among the public at large; 14 and it has given confidence to most of our fellow-Christians to speak the word of God fearlessly and with extraordinary courage.

15 Some, indeed, proclaim Christ in a jealous and quarrelsome spirit; others proclaim him in true good-will, and these are moved by love for me; 16 they know that it is to defend the Gospel that I am where I am. 17 But the others, moved by personal rivalry, present Christ from mixed motives, meaning to stir up fresh trouble for me as I lie in prison. [Or: meaning to make use of my imprisonment to stir up fresh trouble.] 18 What does it matter? One way or another, in pretence or in sincerity, Christ is set forth, and for that I rejoice.

19 Yes, and rejoice I will, knowing well that the issue of it all will be my deliverance, because you are praying for me and the Spirit of Jesus Christ is given me for support. [Or: supplies me with all I need.] 20 For, as I passionately hope, I shall have no cause to be ashamed, but shall speak so boldly that now as always the greatness of Christ will shine out clearly in my person, whether through my life or through my death. 21 For to me life is Christ, and death gain; 22 but what if my living on in the body may serve some good purpose? Which then am I to choose? I cannot tell. 23 I am torn two ways: what I should like is to depart and be with Christ; that is better by far; 24 but for your sake there is greater need for me to stay on in the body. 25 This indeed I know for certain: I shall stay, and stand by you all to help you forward and to add joy to your faith, 26 so that when I am with you again, your pride in me may be unbounded in Christ Jesus.

27 Only, let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you for myself or hear about you from a distance, I may know that you are standing firm, one in spirit, one in mind, contending as one man for the gospel faith, 28 meeting your opponents without so much as a tremor. This is a sure sign to them that their doom is sealed, but a sign of your salvation, and one afforded by God himself; 29 for you have been granted the privilege not only of believing in Christ but also of suffering for him. 30 You and I are engaged in the same contest; you saw me in it once, and, as you hear, I am in it still.

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NEBNew English Bible: © The Delegates of the Oxford University Press & the Syndics of the Cambridge University Press 1961. This Webpage layout © Paul Ingram 2009. Any mismatches, truncated verses, other mistakes? Please e-mail me.