Letter to Philemon

Letter to Philemon

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Chapter 1

1 I am Paul, and I am in prison because I preached about Jesus Christ. Together with brother Timothy I am greeting our dear brother Philemon who ministers with us.
2 I am also sending greetings to our dear sister Apphia and Archippus who serves God as a soldier of Christ. Philemon, I am greeting the church which meets in your home.
3 Receive grace and peace from our God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 Philemon, I thank my God for you. I remember you and always pray for you.
5 I hear from others that you believe in the Lord Jesus and love all the holy people of God.
6 We believe in Christ, and this faith unites us. I pray that you would act according to your faith. Then you will be able to understand well who Jesus Christ is. And I want you to prove your faith with many good deeds.
7 Brother Philemon, we know how much you love us. And it brings us great joy and encouragement. You strengthened the holy people of God, and peace fills the hearts of believers because of you.
8 I could use my authority in Christ and command you what you must do.
9 But I want you to act out of love, not under pressure. I am Paul, an elderly and respected man writing this letter to you from prison. You know that I got here because I preached about Jesus Christ.
10 I met Onesimus in prison and led him to Christ. Now he became like a son to me, and I would like to ask you on his behalf.
11 Before you saw no value in him. But now he could be useful to both you and me.
12 So I am sending him back to you. And together with Onesimus I am sending you a piece of my heart. I ask you to receive him as you would receive me.
13 At first, I wanted to keep Onesimus with me. Then instead of you he would serve me in prison where I ended up for preaching the Good News about Christ.
14 But I did not want to do anything without your agreement. I wanted you to do this good deed not under pressure, but out of your free will.
15 Perhaps, Onesimus ran away from you for a while in order to return to you forever.
16 But now he must become more than a slave to you. Receive him back not as a runaway slave, but as a dear brother. Onesimus is especially dear to me. And now he will mean much more to you than just a slave because he turned to the Lord.
17 And if you consider me your friend, receive Onesimus as you would receive me.
18 Perhaps, he did something wrong to you or caused you losses. In this case, I take responsibility for his debts.
19 I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand, “I will pay you back for what Onesimus owes”. And I will not remind you that you are in debt to me.
20 Brother, because you owe me, do me a favor in the name of the Lord. Then you will bring peace to my heart which belongs to Christ.
21 I wrote you because I am sure that you will listen to me. And I know that you will do even more than what I ask you.
22 And also prepare a room for me where I could stay. I know that you pray for me. And I hope that God will answer your prayer, and I will be able to visit you.
23 Epaphras was put in prison along with me because he preached about Jesus Christ as I did. And he is sending you greetings.
24 Mark, Aristarchus, Demas and Luke minister along with me. And they also are greeting you.
25 May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ fill your spirit. Amen.


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