1Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus,
To all God’s holy people in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons1:1 The word deacons refers here to Christians designated to serve with the overseers/elders of the church in a variety of ways; similarly in Romans 16:1 and 1 Tim. 3:8,12.:
2Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
3I thank my God every time I remember you. 4In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy 5because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, 6being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
7It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me. 8God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.
9And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Paul’s Chains Advance the Gospel
12Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters,1:12 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in verse 14; and in 3:1, 13, 17; 4:1, 8, 21. that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. 13As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard1:13 Or whole palace and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. 14And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.
15It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. 18But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.
Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance.1:19 Or vindication; or salvation 20I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. 25Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26so that through my being with you again your boasting in Christ Jesus will abound on account of me.
Life Worthy of the Gospel
27Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit,1:27 Or in one spirit striving together as one for the faith of the gospel 28without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you. This is a sign to them that they will be destroyed, but that you will be saved—and that by God. 29For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him, 30since you are going through the same struggle you saw I had, and now hear that I still have.
3我每逢想起你们，就感谢我的上帝。 4每次为你们众人祷告的时候，我心里都很喜乐。 5因为你们从开始直到现在，一直和我同心合意地传扬福音。 6我深信，上帝既然在你们心里开始了这美好的工作，祂必在耶稣基督再来的时候完成这工作。 7我对你们众人有这样的感受是很自然的，因为我常把你们放在心上1:7 “我常把你们放在心上”或译“你们常把我放在心上”。。不论我是身在狱中，还是为福音辩护和作证的时候，你们都与我同蒙恩典。 8上帝可以作证，我是怎样以基督耶稣的慈爱之心想念你们。
9我所祈求的就是：你们的爱心随着属灵知识的增加和辨别力的提高而日益增长， 10使你们知道怎样择善而从，做诚实无过的人，一直到基督再来的日子， 11并靠着耶稣基督结满仁义的果子，使上帝得到荣耀与颂赞。
12弟兄姊妹，我希望你们知道，我的遭遇反而会使福音传得更广， 13连所有的皇家卫兵和其他众人都知道我是为了基督的缘故而受囚禁。 14大多数主内的弟兄姊妹看见我为主被囚，信心受到鼓舞，更加放胆无惧地传扬上帝的道。 15当然，有些人宣讲基督是出于嫉妒和争强好胜，也有些人是出于善意。 16后者是出于爱心，知道我是上帝派来维护福音的。 17前者传讲基督是出于个人野心，动机不纯，以为可以增加我在狱中的痛苦。 18那又怎样呢？无论他们传福音是真心还是假意，基督的福音毕竟传开了，因此我很欢喜，而且欢喜不已。 19因为我知道，借着你们的祷告和耶稣基督之灵的帮助，我终会得到释放。
20我殷切地期待和盼望：我不会感到任何羞愧，而是放胆无惧，不管是生是死，都要一如既往地使基督在我身上得到尊崇。 21因为对我来说，活着是为了基督，死了也有益处。 22如果活在世上，我可以做工，多结果子。我真不知道该怎么选择！ 23我处在两难之间。我情愿离开世界，与基督在一起，那实在是再好不过了。 24可是为了你们，我应该活在世上。 25我既然对此深信不疑，就知道自己仍要活下去，继续跟你们在一起，好使你们在信仰上又长进又充满喜乐。 26这样，我再到你们那里的时候，你们可以因为我的缘故更加以基督耶稣为荣。
27最要紧的是：你们行事为人要与基督的福音相称。这样，不管是去看你们，还是只听到你们的消息，我都能知道你们同心合意，坚定不移地一起为福音奋斗， 28毫不惧怕敌人的恐吓。这清楚表明他们必灭亡，你们必得救，这是出于上帝。 29因为上帝为了基督的缘故，赐恩使你们不但信基督，而且为祂受苦， 30经历你们从前在我身上见过，现在又从我这里听到的同样争战。