THE LETTER OF PAUL TO
Paul, a prisoner for *
Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, to Philemon, our beloved friend and fellow worker, 2
and also to †
the beloved Apphia, to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church that meets in yoʋr house: 3
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I give thanks to my God, always making mention of yoʋ in my prayers, 5
because I hear of yoʋr love for all the saints and the faith that yoʋ have toward the Lord Jesus. 6
I pray that yoʋr fellowship with us in the faith may be effective in deepening yoʋr understanding of every blessing that ‡
we have in Christ §
Jesus. 7 *
We are very thankful for the comfort we have received from yoʋr love, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through yoʋ, brother.
Therefore, although I am bold enough in Christ to command yoʋ to do what is right, 9
I would rather appeal to yoʋ on the basis of love. I, Paul, an old man and now a prisoner for †
Jesus Christ, 10
appeal to yoʋ on behalf of my child, Onesimus, whose father I have become during my imprisonment. 11
Once he was useless to yoʋ, but now he is useful both to yoʋ and to me. I am sending him ‡
back, 12 §
and I ask yoʋ to receive him, that is, my very own heart. 13
I wanted to keep him with me so that he could serve me in yoʋr place during my imprisonment for the gospel. 14
But I did not want to do anything without yoʋr consent, so that yoʋr good deed might not be done out of compulsion, but of yoʋr own free will. 15
Perhaps the reason he was separated from yoʋ for an hour was so that yoʋ might have him back forever, 16
no longer as a slave, but more than a slave, as a beloved brother, especially to me, but even more so to yoʋ, both in the flesh and in the Lord.
So if yoʋ consider me to be a partner, receive him as yoʋ would receive me. 18
If he has wronged yoʋ in any way or owes yoʋ anything, charge it to me. 19
I, Paul, write this with my own hand: I will repay it (not to mention that yoʋ owe me yoʋr very own life). 20
Yes, brother, let me have some benefit from yoʋ in the Lord. Refresh my heart in *
21 Trusting in yoʋr obedience, I write to yoʋ, knowing that yoʋ will do even more than I ask. 22 At the same time, I want yoʋ to prepare a guest room for me, for I hope that through your prayers I will be restored to you soon.
Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ †
and Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, my fellow workers, greet yoʋ.
The grace of ‡
our Lord Jesus §
Christ be with your spirit. *
Written from Rome to Philemon and delivered by Onesimus, a servant.†