“According to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.”
“whether by life or by death”
Here are two alternatives. If Paul was to die at the hands of an executioner, he wanted to make Jesus big in that situation. If Paul should continue to live, he tried to make Jesus grand to everyone he met.
God wants us to glorify Him under any contingency.
God wants us to glorify Him both in life and death. There is no excuse for not glorifying God in death or under extreme duress in life.