What does Philemon 1:25 mean?
ESV: The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
NIV: The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
NASB: The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
CSB: The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
NLT: May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
KJV: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
NKJV: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
Verse Commentary:
The closing phrase, "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ," was also used by Paul in 2 Corinthians 13:14 and Philippians 4:23. In both other cases, Paul was close to those he wrote to. This is the only personal letter written by Paul in the New Testament where this same phrase is used, perhaps indicating a closer concern for Philemon.

The final phrase "be with your spirit" refers to Philemon's spirit, not the Holy Spirit. The majority of later manuscripts end this letter with "Amen," similar to other New Testament letters. However, this closing "Amen" was not a consistent part of the manuscript tradition until the New Testament letters began circulating as a collection and were used in churches; it is therefore likely a later addition.

Interestingly, Paul ends with "your" spirit using a plural "all of you" form in Greek. So, this refers not only to Philemon, but also to his family and the church that met in his house (Philemon 1:2).

The Bible does not record what happened to Philemon and Onesimus. However, the letter of Ignatius to the Ephesians, from the early second century, mentions a man named Onesimus as a bishop in Ephesus following Timothy. Later tradition adds that Onesimus was arrested in Rome and martyred, though this is less certain.
Verse Context:
Philemon 1:23–25 closes Paul’s letter to Philemon. After asking Philemon to forgive and free the runaway slave Onesimus, Paul sends greetings from five of his companions: Epaphras, Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke. All of these men are referred to in other scriptures written by Paul. Mark and Luke are the authors of those gospels. According to 2 Timothy 4:10, however, Demas eventually dropped out of his ministry work.
Chapter Summary:
Philemon is a letter from Paul, regarding a runaway slave named Onesimus. Paul respectfully requests that Philemon forgive his runaway slave, free him, and allow him to serve Christ without restrictions. Philemon was a prominent figure in the church of Colossae. Paul goes so far as to ask Philemon to charge any debts owed by Onesimus to Paul himself.
Chapter Context:
Philemon is short enough that it only contains a single chapter. Because Paul knows Philemon personally, and has only positive things to say about him, there is no need for a lengthy discussion. Paul appeals to Philemon to forgive and release his runaway slave, Onesimus. Onesimus, a convert to Christianity, seems be the one sent to deliver this letter to his former master.
Book Summary:
Philemon is one of the shorter books in the Bible, but it contains some important information. The Christian concept of slavery cannot be understood without a proper review of this letter. Paul recognizes the facts of slavery in his era, and does not command Philemon to release Onesimus. However, he does appeal to the unity we share in Christ as a reason for Philemon to set this man free.
Accessed 5/20/2024 9:36:48 PM
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