prisoner of *Jesu Christ, and brother Timotheus.
Unto Philemon the beloved, and our helper, and to the beloved
Appia, and to Archippus our fellow soldier and to the congregation
of thy house.
Grace be with you and peace, from God our father, and from the
Lord Jesus Christ.
I thank my God, making mention always of thee in my prayers,
when I hear of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord
Jesu, and toward all saints: so that the fellowship that thou hast
in the faith is fruitful through knowledge of all good things, which
are in you by Jesus Christ. And we have great joy and consolation
over thy love: For by thee (brother) the saints hearts are
Wherefore though I be bold in Christ to enjoin thee, that
which becometh thee: yet for loves sake I rather beseech thee,
though I be as I am even Paul aged, and now in bonds for Jesu
Christs sake. I beseech thee for my son Onesimus whom I begat in my
bonds, which in time passed was to thee unprofitable: but now
profitable both to thee and also to me whom I have sent home again.
Thou therefore receive him, that is to say mine own bowels, whom I
would fain have retained with me, that in thy stead he might have
ministered unto me in the bonds of the Gospell. Nevertheless,
without thy mind, would I do nothing, that, that good which
springeth of thee, should not be as it were of necessity, but
Haply he therefore departed for a season, that thou shouldest
receive him for ever, not now as a servant: but above a servant, I
mean a brother beloved, specially to me: but how much more unto
thee, both in the flesh, and also in the Lord? If thou count me a
fellow, receive him as myself. If he have hurt thee or oweth thee
ought that lay to my charge. I Paul have written it with mine own
hand. I will recompense it. So that I do not say to thee, how that
thou owest unto me even thine own self. Even so brother, let me
enjoy thee in the Lord. Comfort my bowels in the Lord. Trusting in
thine obedience, I wrote unto thee, knowing that thou wilt do more
than I say for. Moreover prepare me lodging: for I trust through the
help of your prayers, I shall be given unto you. There salute thee,
Epaphras my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesu, Marcus, Aristarchus,
Demas, Lucas, my helpers. The grace of our Lord Jesu Christ be with
your spirits: Amen.
*Jesu: Hebrew for Jesus