Philippians 1

1We, Paul and Timothy, are servants of Christ Jesus. We send greetings to all of God’s people who belong to Christ Jesus and who live in the city of Philippi. We send greetings to the leaders of the church people and those who have been chosen to help them. 2May the loving kindness of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ bless you and give you peace.

3Every time I think of you I thank God for you. 4I have joy in my heart every time I ask God to help you. 5I thank God for the joy we share in telling the good news from the very first day until now. 6God began to do a good work in you. And I am sure that he will keep on doing it until he has finished it. He will keep on until the day Jesus Christ comes again.

7I have a right to feel this way about you all because I love you very much. God is good to me and you all share in this goodness. You share in my troubles in prison. You share in my work of staying true to the good news of Jesus. 8I love you all as Jesus Christ loves you. God knows that what I say is true.

9, 10When I talk to God I ask that you may have more and more love. I ask him that you will also know and understand, so that you will be able to see what things are right. I want you to be clean with nothing wrong in you when Jesus Christ comes back. 11I want you to be doing right by the help of Jesus Christ. That will make people praise God and will show how great he is.

12My brothers, I want you to know that what has happened to me has made more people know about the good news. 13All the soldiers here and all the other people know that I am in prison because of Christ. 14Because I am in prison, most of my Christian brothers are stronger for the Lord. They are strong in the faith now and they are not afraid to tell God’s good news about Jesus Christ. 15Some of them tell about Christ because they are jealous. They want to prove they are better than me. Some of them tell about Christ because they want to help me. 16The first ones do it because they want to prove they are better than I am. They do not have a good reason. But they think they will make trouble for me while I am in prison. 17These last ones do it because they love me. They know that I am here to speak for the good news. 18But it does not matter. Every way, in the wrong way or in the right way, Christ is talked about. I will be glad because of that. 19Yes, I will keep on being glad about it. I know that you will talk to God about me, and I know that the Spirit of Jesus Christ will help me. So I know that things will work out for me to be free. 20I look forward to this very much and hope that I will not be ashamed at all. But I want to be very strong. I want to bring honour to Christ now as I always have. I can do this if I live or die.

21All I live for is Christ, and to die would give me more blessing. 22If I keep on living, then I will keep on doing my good work. I really do not know which I want more, to live or to die. 23I am caught between these two. I want to die and go to be with Christ, which would be very much better. 24But you need me more to stay here. 25Because I am sure of this, I know that I will stay on and be here with you all. That will help you to be better Christians and happy ones. 26Then you will be even more happy about what Christ Jesus has done for me because I have come back to you.

27So whatever happens, live as people who believe the good news of Christ should live. Then, if I come and see you, or if I am away and hear about you, you will be standing strong together in one spirit. With one mind you will be working hard together for the good news. 28Do not fear in any way those who are working against you. It is God who shows them they are lost and you are saved. 29God has given you a special gift. You can not only believe in Christ but also suffer for him. 30You have the same trouble which you saw me have. And you hear now that I still have it.

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