Chapter 1

¶1. Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother. To Philemon our beloved fellow-worker,

2. and Apphia our beloved sister, and Archippus our fellow-soldier, and to the Assembly that meets in your house:

3. Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Master, Jesus Christ.

¶4. I thank my God, always making mention of you in my prayers,

5. hearing of your love, and of the faithfulness that you demonstrate toward the Master, Jesus, and to all the saints,

6. that, knowing every good thing that is in us in Christ Jesus, the generosity of your faith may be put into action.

7. We do receive much aid and comfort through your love, in that the hearts of the saints are refreshed by you, my brother.

¶8. And so, though I have enough boldness in Christ to order you to do the right thing,

9. for love’s sake, I make entreaty instead, being such a one as Paul, an old man, and now a prisoner for Jesus Christ as well.

10. I entreat you for my son, whom I have begotten in my chains, Onesimus,

11. who once was useless to you, but now is useful to both you and me, whom I have sent back.

12. Receive him, that is, my very heart,

13. whom I wanted to keep for myself so that he might, in your place, minister to me in my chains for the gospel,

14. but without your consent, I would do nothing, lest your good deed be, as it were, forced rather than voluntary.

15. For it may be that the reason he was taken away for a while is so that you might have him back forever,

16. no longer as a slave; on the contrary, above a slave — a beloved brother, especially to me, but how much more to you, both in the flesh and in the Lord!

17. So then, if you consider me a partner, receive him as me.

18. If he wronged you, or if he owes anything, charge it to me.

19. I, Paul, write with my own hand: I will repay it. (However, I do not say to you that you owe me even your very self.)

20. Come, brother, let me have from you a benefit in the Lord; refresh my heart in the Lord.

21. Being persuaded of your obedience, I wrote you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.

22. And one more thing. Prepare a guest room for me, for I hope that through your prayers, I will be given to you.

¶23. Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus greets you,

24. as do Marcus, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, my fellow-workers.

¶25. The grace of our Master, Jesus Christ, be with your spirits. Amen.

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