Philemon 1:3-20 (NRSV)
3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord
4 When I remember you in my prayers, I always thank my God
5 because I hear of your love for all the saints and your
faith toward the Lord Jesus.
6 I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective
when you perceive all the good that we may do for Christ.
7 I have indeed received much joy and encouragement from
your love, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed
through you, my brother.
8 For this reason, though I am bold enough in Christ to
command you to do your duty,
9 yet I would rather appeal to you on the basis of love
-- and I, Paul, do this as an old man, and now also as a prisoner
of Christ Jesus.
10 I am appealing to you for my child, Onesimus, whose father
I have become during my imprisonment.
11 Formerly he was useless to you, but now he is indeed
useful both to you and to me.
12 I am sending him, that is, my own heart, back to you.
13 I wanted to keep him with me, so that he might be of
service to me in your place during my imprisonment for the gospel;
14 but I preferred to do nothing without your consent, in
order that your good deed might be voluntary and not something forced.
15 Perhaps this is the reason he was separated from you
for a while, so that you might have him back forever,
16 no longer as a slave but more than a slave, a beloved
brother -- especially to me but how much more to you, both in the
flesh and in the Lord.
17 So if you consider me your partner, welcome him as you
would welcome me.
18 If he has wronged you in any way, or owes you anything,
charge that to my account.
19 I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand: I will repay
it. I say nothing about your owing me even your own self.
20 Yes, brother, let me have this benefit from you in the
Lord! Refresh my heart in Christ.