* - denotes footnote
9 I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding.10 For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ's return.11 May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ*—for this will bring much glory and praise to God.
Paul's Joy That Christ Is Preached
12 And I want you to know, my dear brothers and sisters,* that everything that has happened to me here has helped to spread the Good News.13 For everyone here, including the whole palace guard,* knows that I am in chains because of Christ.14 And because of my imprisonment, most of the believers* here have gained confidence and boldly speak God's message* without fear.
15 It's true that some are preaching out of jealousy and rivalry. But others preach about Christ with pure motives.16 They preach because they love me, for they know I have been appointed to defend the Good News.17 Those others do not have pure motives as they preach about Christ. They preach with selfish ambition, not sincerely, intending to make my chains more painful to me.18 But that doesn't matter. Whether their motives are false or genuine, the message about Christ is being preached either way, so I rejoice. And I will continue to rejoice.19 For I know that as you pray for me and the Spirit of Jesus Christ helps me, this will lead to my deliverance.
Paul's Life for Christ
20 For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die.21 For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better.22 But if I live, I can do more fruitful work for Christ. So I really don't know which is better.23 I'm torn between two desires: I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me.24 But for your sakes, it is better that I continue to live.
25 Knowing this, I am convinced that I will remain alive so I can continue to help all of you grow and experience the joy of your faith.26 And when I come to you again, you will have even more reason to take pride in Christ Jesus because of what he is doing through me.
Live as Citizens of Heaven
27 Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News.28 Don't be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself.29 For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him.30 We are in this struggle together. You have seen my struggle in the past, and you know that I am still in the midst of it.