¶ Paul and Timotheus the servants of Iesu Christ. To all the saints in Christ Iesu which are at Philippos, with the bishops and deacons.
¶ Grace be with you and peace from God our father, and from the Lord Iesus Christe.
¶ I thank my God with all remembrance of you, always in all my prayers for you all, and pray with gladness, because of the fellowship which ye have in the gospell from the first day unto now, and am surely certified of this, that he which began a god work in you shall perform it until the day of Iesus Christ, as it becometh me so to judge of you all, because I have you in my heart, and have you also every one companions of grace with me, even in my bonds as I defend, and stablish the gospell.
¶ God beareth me record how greatly I long after you all from the very heart roote in Iesus Christ. And this I pray, that your love may increase more and more in knowledge, and in all fealing, that ye might accept things most excellent, that ye might be pure and such as should hurt no man's conscience, until the day of Christ, filled with the fruits of righteousness, which fruits come by Iesus Christ unto the glory and laud of God.
¶ I would ye understood brethren that my business is happened unto the greater furthering of the gospell. So that my bonds in Christ are manifest thorow out all the judgement hall: and in all other places, In so much that many of the brethren in the Lord are boldened thorow my bonds, and dare more largely speak the word without fear. Some there are which preach Christ of envy and strife, and some of goodwill. The one part preacheth Christ of strife, and not purely, supposing to add more adversity to my bonds. The other part of love, because they see that I am set to defend the gospell.
¶ What thing is this? Notwithsanding by all manner ways, whether it be by occasion or of truth, yet Christ is preached: and therefore I joy. Yea and will joy. For I know that this shall be for my health, thorow your prayer, and ministering of the spirit of Iesu Christ, as I heartily look for and hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed: but that with all confidence, as always in times past, even so now Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be thorow life, or else death. For Christ is to me life, and death is to me advantage.
¶ If it chance me to live in the flesh, that is to me fruitful for to work, and what to choose I wot not. I am constrained of two things: I desire to be lowsed, and to be with Christ, which thing is best of all: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you. And this am I sure of, that I shall abide, and with you all continue, for the furtherance and joy of your faith, that ye may more abundantly rejoice in Iesus Christ throwe me, by my coming to you again.
¶ Only let your conversation be, as it becometh the gospell of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may yet hear of you, that ye continue in one spirit, and in one soul laboring as we do to maintain the faith of the gospell, and in nothing fearing your adversaries: which is to them a token of perdition, and to you a sign of health, and that of God. For unto you it is given, that not only ye should believe on Christ: but also suffer for his sake, and have even the same fight which ye saw me have and now hear of me.
© Faith of God
William Tyndale 1526