Greeting

1 Paul and Timothy, bond-servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul’s Gratitude and Prayer

I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, in my every prayer for you all continually making my requests with joy. I also thank Him for your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. And indeed it is only right for me to think this way about you all, since I have you in my heart, since both in my chains and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers of grace with me. For God is my witness how greatly I long for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in correct knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent,1 that you may be sincere and without offense as you look for the day of Christ, 11 being filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

A Good Report

12 But I want you to know, brothers, that the things that have happened to me have actually turned out for the greater progress of the gospel, 13 seeing that it has become clear to the whole praetorian guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in the cause of Christ; 14 also, most of the brothers in the Lord, having been encouraged by my chains, are now far more bold to speak the word without fear. 15 Some, to be sure, preach Christ even from envy and strife, but some also from goodwill. 16 The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel; 17the former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, but thinking to stir up trouble for me in my chains. 18 What then is the result? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed. And in this I rejoice.

Joyful Confidence in Christ

19 Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20 all in accordance with my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing shall I be ashamed, but that with all boldness—as always, so now as well—Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.  21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 If, however, I should live on in the flesh, that will mean fruitful labor for me. And so I do not know what to prefer,2 23 but am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ (for that is far better for me), 24 yet knowing that to remain on in the flesh is necessary for you. 25 And so, being convinced of this, I know that I will indeed remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that your rejoicing3 over me may abound in Christ Jesus through my coming to you again.

27 Only let your manner of life4 be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel, 28 in no way intimidated5 by your adversaries, which is to them a clear sign of destruction, but to you of salvation, and that from God. 29 For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 experiencing the same conflict that you saw in me and now hear to be in me.

Notes

  1. Or distinguish between things that differ
  2. Or choose
  3. Or boasting, glorying
  4. Lit. citizenship as free men
  5. Or frightened

 

Unity Through Christ-like Humility

If, therefore, there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort of love, any fellowship of the Spirit, any affection and compassion, fulfill my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfish ambition or hollow conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each of you regard the others as more important than himself; let each one look out not only for his own interests, but for the interests of others as well. Let this mind be in you which also was in Christ Jesus, who, being in the very form of God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, coming1 in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself, becoming obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also highly exalted Him, and gave Him the name that is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, of those on earth, and of those under the earth; 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Carry the Light

12 So then, my beloved, just as you always have obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who works within you both to will and to work for His good pleasure. 14 Do all things without complaining and disputing, 15 that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may glory that I neither ran in vain nor labored in vain.17 But even if I am being poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am glad and rejoice together with you all. 18 And in the same way, you also should be2 glad and rejoice together with me.

Godly Messengers Commended

19 But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your circumstances. 20 For I have no one else like-minded, who will sincerely look out for your welfare. 21 For all seek their own interests, and not those of Christ Jesus. 22 But you know his proven character,3 that as a son with his father he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel. 23 Therefore I hope to send him at once, as soon as I see how things will turn out for me. 24 And I trust in the Lord that I myself also shall come shortly.

25 Yet I considered it necessary to send you Epaphroditus—my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, but also your messenger and the one who ministered to my need—26 since he was longing for you all, and was distressed because you had heard that he was sick. 27 For indeed he was sick, almost to the point of death; but God had mercy on him, and not only on him, but on me as well, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. 28 Therefore I have sent him all the more eagerly, so that when you see him again you may rejoice, and I may be the less sorrowful. 29 Therefore, receive him in the Lord with all gladness, and hold such men in high regard; 30 because for the work of Christ he came close to death, taking no thought for his life, in order to supply what was lacking in your service toward me.

Notes

  1. Or being made in the likeness
  2. Or are
  3. Or worth

 

The True Circumcision

Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble for me, and it is safe for you: Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the mutilation! For we are the true circumcision, who worship in the Spirit of God, glory in Christ Jesus, and put no confidence in the flesh— though I myself might put confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else thinks he might put confidence in the flesh, I the more so: circumcised the eighth day, of the family of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness that is in the Law, blameless. But whatever things were gain to me, I count them as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things as loss in view of the surpassing worth of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which comes through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God based on faith— 10 that I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, 11 so that by all means1 I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.

This One Thing I Do!

12 Not that I have already obtained, or am already perfected; but I press on in order that I might lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus also laid hold of me. 13 Brothers, I do not count myself as having laid hold. But this one thing I do: forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Therefore, as many of us as are mature, let us have this mind; and if in anything you are otherwise minded, God will reveal that to you as well. 16 Nevertheless, to whatever measure we have attained, let us continue to walk in it.

17 Brothers, join in following my example, and note well those who walk according to the pattern you have seen in us. 18 For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you now even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ,19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame—who set their mind on earthly things. 20 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly await the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body, that it might be conformed to His glorious body, according to the exercise of that power by which he is able to subject all things to himself.

Notes

  1. if perhaps, if by any means

 

Therefore, my beloved brothers whom I long to see, my joy and crown, in this manner stand firm in the Lord, beloved ones.

Concluding Exhortations

I beseech Euodia and I beseech Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. And I ask you also, true companion, to help these women who have shared my struggle in the cause of the gospel, together with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life.

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say it: Rejoice! Let your forbearance be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good reputation—if there is anything excellent and anything worthy of praise—set your mind on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice them, and the God of peace will be with you.

Philippian Generosity Commended

10 I greatly rejoiced in the Lord that now at last you have again expressed your care for me; though you certainly did care, but simply lacked opportunity. 11 Not that I speak out of want, for I have learned to be content in all my circumstances: 12 I know how to live humbly, and I know how to abound. In each and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of enjoying bounty and suffering lack. 13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

14 Nevertheless you have done well to share with me in my affliction. 15 And you yourselves also know, dear Philippians, that in the early days1 of the proclamation of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving except you alone; 16 for even in Thessalonica you sent something more than once to meet my needs. 17 Not that I seek the gift itself, but rather the fruit that fills up your account. 18 But I have received everything, and have more than enough. I am amply supplied, having received from Epaphroditus the things you sent, a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well-pleasing to God. 19 And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 20 Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

Greetings and Benediction

21 Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me greet you. 22 All the saints greet you, but especially those of Caesar’s household.

23 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Notes

  1. Lit. in the beginning