2 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 * make my gladness complete by being concerned for the same things, having the same love, united in soul, of one mind; 3 nothing along the line of church politics or of pretentiousness, but in humility regarding each other as superiors; 4 not each keeping his eyes on his own interests but on those of others too. 5 Have in you, each of you, this same mind as in Christ Jesus, 6 who, when he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as a prize, 7 but emptied himself, taking slave form, coming into the likeness of humanity; 8 and, being found as it were a man in guise, he humbled himself to become obedient down to death, the death of a cross; 9 for which very reason God raised him supremely high and granted him the name above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee of what is in heaven and what is on earth and what is underground should bend 11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. 12 Consequently, dear friends, as you always did obey, not as if only in my presence but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you to produce both the willing and the working for his pleasure. 14 Do everything without grumblings and questionings, 15 in order that you may come out irreproachable and innocent, faultless children of God in the midst of a devious and shifty generation among whom you show like luminaries in the world presenting the word of life, 16 to give me a ground for boasting on the day of Christ that I did not run a bootless race nor toil bootlessly; 17 nay, if I am even going to be poured out as the wine over the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am joyous, and share in the joy you are all having. 18 The same joy to you too, and a share in my joy! 19 But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send you Timothy speedily in order that I too may be in good spirits by knowing about you. 20 For I have nobody his equal in soul who will genuinely take care for you; 21 for all of them are looking after what will be for themselves, not what will be for Jesus Christ. 22 * And you know by experience that as a son would for a father he did his service with me toward the gospel work. 23 So I hope to send him right away when I see how it goes with me; 24 and I feel assured in the Lord that I myself shall come speedily. 25 But I have felt it necessary to send Epaphroditus to you, my brother and co-worker and fellow-soldier and your delegate and agent in service to my needs, 26 since he was longing after you all and was uneasy because you heard that he was sick— 27 for sick he was, very close to death; but God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me too, in order that I should not have one grief upon another. 28 So I have been the more intent on sending him, in order that at seeing him you may be glad again, and I be freer from grief. 29 So receive him in the Lord with all rejoicing, and hold such men in honor, 30 because for Christ’s work he came close up to death, endangering his life in order to fill out the shortage of you in the service to me.
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