Greetings from Paul and Timothy
(1 Thessalonians 1:1-10; 2 Thessalonians 1:1-2)
1Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy, a brother: to Philemon, our beloved and fellow labourer; 2And to Appia, our dearest sister, and to Archippus, our fellow soldier, and to the church which is in thy house: 3Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Philemon's Faith and Love
4I give thanks to my God, always making a remembrance of thee in my prayers. 5Hearing of thy charity and faith, which thou hast in the Lord Jesus, and towards all the saints: 6That the communication of thy faith may be made evident in the acknowledgment of every good work, that is in you in Christ Jesus. 7For I have had great joy and consolation in thy charity, because the bowels of the saints have been refreshed by thee, brother.
Paul's Appeal for Onesimus
8Wherefore though I have much confidence in Christ Jesus, to command thee that which is to the purpose: 9For charity sake I rather beseech, whereas thou art such a one, as Paul an old man, and now a prisoner also of Jesus Christ.
10I beseech thee for my son, whom I have begotten in my bands, Onesimus, 11Who hath been heretofore unprofitable to thee, but now is profitable both to me and thee, 12Whom I have sent back to thee. And do thou receive him as my own bowels. 13Whom I would have retained with me, that in thy stead he might have ministered to me in the bands of the gospel: 14But without thy counsel I would do nothing: that thy good deed might not be as it were of necessity, but voluntary. 15For perhaps he therefore departed for a season from thee, that thou mightest receive him again for ever: 16Not now as a servant, but instead of a servant, a most dear brother, especially to me: but how much more to thee both in the flesh and in the Lord?
17If therefore thou count me a partner, receive him as myself. 18And if he hath wronged thee in any thing, or is in thy debt, put that to my account. 19I Paul have written it with my own hand: I will repay it: not to say to thee, that thou owest me thy own self also. 20Yea, brother. May I enjoy thee in the Lord. Refresh my bowels in the Lord.
21Trusting in thy obedience, I have written to thee: knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.
22But withal prepare me also a lodging. For I hope that through your prayers I shall be given unto you.
23There salute thee Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus; 24Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke my fellow labourers.
25The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.