Perhaps the reason he was separated from you for a little while was that you might have him back for good--
no longer as a slave,1 but better than a slave, as a dear brother.2 He is very dear to me but even dearer to you, both as a man and as a brother in the Lord.
References for Philemon 1:16
So if you consider me a partner,3 welcome him as you would welcome me.
References for Philemon 1:17
If he has done you any wrong or owes you anything, charge it to me.4
References for Philemon 1:18
I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand.5 I will pay it back--not to mention that you owe me your very self.
References for Philemon 1:19
I do wish, brother, that I may have some benefit from you in the Lord; refresh6 my heart in Christ.
References for Philemon 1:20
Confident7 of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I ask.
References for Philemon 1:21
And one thing more: Prepare a guest room for me, because I hope to be8 restored to you in answer to your prayers.9
References for Philemon 1:22