Pastor Kurt Schaser
A Small Book with BIG Lessons
1Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother,
To Philemon our dear friend and fellow worker— 2also to Apphia our sister
and Archippus our fellow soldier—and to the church that meets in your
3Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, 5because I hear
about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus. 6I pray
that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your
understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ. 7Your love
has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have
refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.
8Therefore, although in Christ I could be bold and order you to do what you
ought to do, 9yet I prefer to appeal to you on the basis of love. It is as none
other than Paul—an old man and now also a prisoner of Christ Jesus— 10that
I appeal to you for my son Onesimus, who became my son while I was in
chains. 11Formerly he was useless to you, but now he has become useful both
to you and to me.
12I am sending him—who is my very heart—back to you. 13I would have
liked to keep him with me so that he could take your place in helping me
while I am in chains for the gospel. 14But I did not want to do anything without
your consent, so that any favor you do would not seem forced but would be
voluntary. 15Perhaps the reason he was separated from you for a little while
was that you might have him back forever— 16no longer as a slave, but
better than a slave, as a dear brother. He is very dear to me but even dearer
to you, both as a fellow man and as a brother in the Lord.
17So if you consider me a partner, welcome him as you would welcome
me. 18If he has done you any wrong or owes you anything, charge it to me.
19I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand. I will pay it back—not to mention
that you owe me your very self. 20I do wish, brother, that I may have some
benefit from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in Christ. 21Confident of your
obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I ask.
22And one thing more: Prepare a guest room for me, because I hope to be
restored to you in answer to your prayers. 23Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in
Christ Jesus, sends you greetings. 24And so do Mark, Aristarchus, Demas and
Luke, my fellow workers.25The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.