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He exhorts them to unite in brotherly love, and to beware of rivalry and vainglory. For a trustworthy example, he sets Christ before them.

If there is among you any consolation in Christ, if there is any comforting love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if there is any compassion or mercy, fulfil my joy and all draw one way, having one love and being of one accord and of one mind. Let nothing be done through rivalry or vainglory, but in meekness of mind let everyone esteem the other better than himself. And look not every person on his own things, but every person on the things of others.

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, counted it not a prize to be equal to God, but made himself of no reputation, and took on him the form of a servant, and became like humankind, and was found in his appearance as a man. He humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. For this God has exalted him, and given him a name above all names, 10 so that in the name of Jesus every knee will bow, both of things in heaven and things in earth, and things under the earth, 11 and so that all tongues will confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

12 Therefore my dearly beloveds, as you have always obeyed, not only when I was present, but now much more in my absence, even so work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 For it is God who works in you both the will and also the deed, of his own good will.

14 Do all things without murmuring and disputing, 15 so that you may be faultless and pure, and the children of God without rebuke in the midst of a corrupt and perverse nation – among whom see that you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain, have not laboured in vain. 17 Yea, and even if I am offered up upon the offering and sacrifice of your faith, I am glad, and rejoice with you all. 18 And you also, be glad for the same cause, and rejoice with me.

19 I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, so that I also may be of good comfort when I know your state. 20 For I have no man who is minded so like me, who with such pure affection cares for your matters. 21 For all others seek their own, and not that which is Jesus Christ’s. 22 You know the proof of him, how as a son with the father he bestowed his labour upon the gospel with me. 23 I hope to send him as soon as I know how it will go with me. 24 I trust in the Lord that I also myself may come shortly.

25 I supposed it necessary to send to you brother Epaphroditus, my companion in labour and fellow-soldier – your apostle, and my minister at my need. 26 For he longed after you, and was full of heaviness because you had heard that he was sick. 27 And without question he was sick, and that near to death. But God had mercy on him – not on him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. 28 I sent him therefore the more quickly, so that when you saw him you might rejoice again, and I might be less sorrowful. 29 Receive him therefore in the Lord with all gladness. And make much of such a one, 30 because for the work of Christ he went so far that he was near to death, and regarded not his life, to provide that service which was lacking on your part toward me.