Philemon 1:12
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
I am sending him--who is my very heart--back to you.

New Living Translation
I am sending him back to you, and with him comes my own heart.

English Standard Version
I am sending him back to you, sending my very heart.

Berean Study Bible
I am sending back to you him who is my very heart.

Berean Literal Bible
whom I have sent back to you in person--he who is my very heart--

New American Standard Bible
I have sent him back to you in person, that is, sending my very heart,

King James Bible
Whom I have sent again: thou therefore receive him, that is, mine own bowels:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I am sending him back to you as a part of myself.

International Standard Version
As I send him back, it's like I'm coming along with him.

NET Bible
I have sent him (who is my very heart) back to you.

New Heart English Bible
I am sending back to you, him who is my very heart,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And I sent him to you, so receive him as my son.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I am sending him back to you. This is like sending you a part of myself.

New American Standard 1977
And I have sent him back to you in person, that is, sending my very heart,

Jubilee Bible 2000
whom I send again unto thee; therefore, receive him, as you would receive me.

King James 2000 Bible
Whom I have sent again: you therefore receive him, that is, my own heart:

American King James Version
Whom I have sent again: you therefore receive him, that is, my own bowels:

American Standard Version
whom I have sent back to thee in his own person, that is, my very heart:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Whom I have sent back to thee. And do thou receive him as my own bowels.

Darby Bible Translation
whom I have sent back to thee: [but do thou receive] him, that is, my bowels:

English Revised Version
whom I have sent back to thee in his own person, that is, my very heart:

Webster's Bible Translation
Whom I have sent again: thou therefore receive him, that is, my own bowels:

Weymouth New Testament
I am sending him back to you, though in so doing I send part of myself.

World English Bible
I am sending him back. Therefore receive him, that is, my own heart,

Young's Literal Translation
whom I did send again, and thou him (that is, my own bowels) receive,
Study Bible
Paul's Appeal for Onesimus
11Formerly he was useless to you, but now he has become useful both to you and to me. 12I am sending back to you him who is my very heart. 13I would have liked to keep him with me, so that on your behalf he could minister to me in my chains for the gospel.…
Cross References
Philemon 1:11
Formerly he was useless to you, but now he has become useful both to you and to me.

Philemon 1:13
I would have liked to keep him with me, so that on your behalf he could minister to me in my chains for the gospel.
Treasury of Scripture

Whom I have sent again: you therefore receive him, that is, my own bowels:

thou.

Matthew 6:14,15 For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will …

Matthew 18:21-35 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother …

Mark 11:25 And when you stand praying, forgive, if you have ought against any…

Ephesians 4:32 And be you kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, …

mine.

Deuteronomy 13:6 If your brother, the son of your mother, or your son, or your daughter, …

2 Samuel 16:11 And David said to Abishai, and to all his servants, Behold, my son, …

Jeremiah 31:20 Is Ephraim my dear son? is he a pleasant child? for since I spoke …

Luke 15:20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great …

(12) Thou therefore receive him.--The word "receive" is not in the best MSS. It is supplied here from Philemon 1:17 (apparently rightly in respect of sense) to fill up a broken construction in the original.

Mine own bowels--i.e., my own heart, dear to me as my own soul. There is, indeed, an usage of the word which applies it to children as begotten of our own body. But this is hardly St. Paul's usage (see 2Corinthians 6:12; Philippians 1:8; Philippians 2:1; Colossians 3:12; and Philemon 1:7; Philemon 1:20 of this Epistle), though it suits very well with the phrase "whom I have begotten" above.

Verse 12. - Whom I sent back [to thee, according to A, C, D*, E, אָ] (aorist for present); but the decision reflects the struggle. It had not been altogether easy for the apostle to part with the youth, whom he might not see again. The whole Epistle is full of this strong and yearning affection. Thou therefore receive him. Do thou also act as becomes a Christian; receive him as my son. "Wonderfully efficacious this method for appeasing the anger of Philemon! For he was not able to rage or to do anything harshly against one whom Paul had called his own bowels" (Estius). A, F, G, and א omit "receive," as also Tischendorf. The Revised Version omits this clause. Whom I have sent again,.... From Rome to Colosse, or to Philemon, wherever he was, along with this epistle:

thou therefore receive him, that is, mine own bowels; meaning his son, who, in a spiritual sense, came out of his bowels, to whom he stood in the relation of a spiritual father; so the Syriac version renders it, as my son, so receive him; see Genesis 15:4 and for whom he had a most strong affection, and tender regard; his bowels yearned for him, and he suggests by this expression, that should he reject him, it would give him the utmost pain and uneasiness; and he should be obliged to cry out as the Prophet Jeremy did, "my bowels, my bowels, I am pained at the very heart"; Jeremiah 4:19 wherefore he entreats him to receive him again into his house and family, into his service, and into his heart and affections, where the apostle had received him. 12. mine own bowels—as dear to me as my own heart [Alford]. Compare Phm 17, "as myself." The object of my most intense affection as that of a parent for a child.1:8-14 It does not lower any one to condescend, and sometimes even to beseech, where, in strictness of right, we might command: the apostle argues from love, rather than authority, in behalf of one converted through his means; and this was Onesimus. In allusion to that name, which signifies profitable, the apostle allows that in time past he had been unprofitable to Philemon, but hastens to mention the change by which he had become profitable. Unholy persons are unprofitable; they answer not the great end of their being. But what happy changes conversion makes! of evil, good; of unprofitable, useful. Religious servants are treasures in a family. Such will make conscience of their time and trusts, and manage all they can for the best. No prospect of usefulness should lead any to neglect their obligations, or to fail in obedience to superiors. One great evidence of true repentance consists in returning to practise the duties which have been neglected. In his unconverted state, Onesimus had withdrawn, to his master's injury; but now he had seen his sin and repented, he was willing and desirous to return to his duty. Little do men know for what purposes the Lord leaves some to change their situations, or engage in undertakings, perhaps from evil motives. Had not the Lord overruled some of our ungodly projects, we may reflect upon cases, in which our destruction must have been sure.
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