Philemon 1:21
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I ask.

New Living Translation
I am confident as I write this letter that you will do what I ask and even more!

English Standard Version
Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.

Berean Study Bible
Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I ask.

Berean Literal Bible
Being persuaded of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even above what I say.

New American Standard Bible
Having confidence in your obedience, I write to you, since I know that you will do even more than what I say.

King James Bible
Having confidence in thy obedience I wrote unto thee, knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Since I am confident of your obedience, I am writing to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.

International Standard Version
Confident of your obedience, I am writing to you because I know that you will do even more than I ask.

NET Bible
Since I was confident that you would obey, I wrote to you, because I knew that you would do even more than what I am asking you to do.

New Heart English Bible
Having confidence in your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even beyond what I say.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Because I trust that you will listen to me, I have written to you and I know that you will do more than what I have said.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I am confident as I write to you that you will do this. And I know that you will do even more than I ask.

New American Standard 1977
Having confidence in your obedience, I write to you, since I know that you will do even more than what I say.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Having confidence in thy obedience, I have written unto thee, knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.

King James 2000 Bible
Having confidence in your obedience I wrote unto you, knowing that you will also do more than I say.

American King James Version
Having confidence in your obedience I wrote to you, knowing that you will also do more than I say.

American Standard Version
Having confidence in thine obedience I write unto thee, knowing that thou wilt do even beyond what I say.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Trusting in thy obedience, I have written to thee: knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.

Darby Bible Translation
Being confident of thine obedience, I have written to thee, knowing that thou wilt do even more than I say.

English Revised Version
Having confidence in thine obedience I write unto thee, knowing that thou wilt do even beyond what I say.

Webster's Bible Translation
Having confidence in thy obedience I wrote to thee, knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.

Weymouth New Testament
I write to you in the full confidence that you will meet my wishes, for I know you will do even more than I say.

World English Bible
Having confidence in your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even beyond what I say.

Young's Literal Translation
having been confident in thy obedience I did write to thee, having known that also above what I may say thou wilt do;
Study Bible
Paul's Appeal for Onesimus
20Yes, brother, let me have some benefit from you in the Lord. Refresh my heart in Christ. 21Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I ask. 22In the meantime, prepare a guest room for me, because I hope that through your prayers, I will be restored to you.…
Cross References
Romans 2:19
if you are convinced that you are a guide for the blind, a light for those in darkness,

2 Corinthians 2:3
I wrote as I did so that on my arrival I would not be saddened by those who ought to make me rejoice. I had confidence in all of you, that you would share my joy.
Treasury of Scripture

Having confidence in your obedience I wrote to you, knowing that you will also do more than I say.

2 Corinthians 2:3 And I wrote this same to you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow …

2 Corinthians 7:16 I rejoice therefore that I have confidence in you in all things.

2 Corinthians 8:22 And we have sent with them our brother, whom we have oftentimes proved …

Galatians 5:10 I have confidence in you through the Lord, that you will be none …

2 Thessalonians 3:4 And we have confidence in the Lord touching you, that you both do …

Philemon 1:21-25 contain the conclusion of the Epistle--hope to visit Philemon soon, salutation, and blessing.

(21) Confidence in thy obedience.--It is curious to notice how, in this conclusion, St. Paul seems to glide, as it were insensibly, out of the tone of entreaty as to an equal, into the authority of a superior. The word "obedience" is found in 2Corinthians 7:15, there in connection with "fear and trembling." He preferred to appeal to Philemon's love; he knew that in any case he could rely on his deference.

Do more than I say.--This can hardly refer to anything except the manumission of Onesimus, and possibly his being sent back again to St. Paul. Exactly in this way Christianity was to work out the release of the slave--not by command, but by free and natural inference from its emphatic declaration of his true brotherhood in Christ.

(22) A lodging.--The word often signifies "hospitality" generally, which Philemon might naturally offer in his own house, but which St. Paul would not suggest or ask.

I shall be given unto you.--Literally, as a favour from supreme authority. Comp. the technical and forensic use of the word in Acts 3:14; Acts 25:11 : for good in one case, in the other for evil. If he was so "granted," it would be by Csar instrumentally, by God's overruling will ultimately. The passage, like Philippians 2:24, but even more definitely, expresses St. Paul's expectation of a release which might enable him to visit the East again. It is curious that there is no similar allusion in the Colossian Epistle, sent with this.

(23) My fellowprisoner.--Comp. Colossians 4:10, and see Note there. The salutations here correspond exactly in substance (though more condensed in style) with that passage, except that "Jesus, called Justus" (probably unknown to Philemon) is here omitted.

(25) The grace . . .--This form of St. Paul's usual blessing is found also in Galatians 6:18; Philippians 4:23; 2Timothy 4:22. We notice by the word "your" that, like the opening salutation, it is addressed to all Philemon's family and "the church in his house."

Verse 21. - I wrote unto thee; write (Revised Version; see Ver. 19), or perhaps referring back, as in Ver. 19, to the request in Ver. 17. The strong, fervid, and repeated appeals of the apostle had not been caused by distrust of Philemon, nor of their own efficacy, but were the natural outcome of the strong interest he felt in the case of Onesimus, and the desire he felt to replace him in the favor of his master; partly also, perhaps, to the warmth and fervor of his natural character, which uttered itself involuntarily in forcible expressions. Having confidence in thy obedience,.... In his obedience of faith to Christ, and his Gospel; he having been made willing in the day of his power to serve him, as well as to be saved by him; and being constrained by his love, and the Spirit of Christ having wrought in him both to will and to do of his good pleasure:

l wrote unto thee, knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say; the knowledge the apostle had of Philemon's cheerful obedience to Christ in all the parts of duty, encouraged him to write to him, on this head; believing that he would even do more than he had desired of him. 21. Having confidence in thy obedience—to my apostolic authority, if I were to "enjoin" it (Phm 8), which I do not, preferring to beseech thee for it as a favor (Phm 9).

thou will also do more—towards Onesimus: hinting at his possible manumission by Philemon, besides, being kindly received.1:15-22 When we speak of the nature of any sin or offence against God, the evil of it is not to be lessened; but in a penitent sinner, as God covers it, so must we. Such changed characters often become a blessing to all among whom they reside. Christianity does not do away our duties to others, but directs to the right doing of them. True penitents will be open in owning their faults, as doubtless Onesimus had been to Paul, upon his being awakened and brought to repentance; especially in cases of injury done to others. The communion of saints does not destroy distinction of property. This passage is an instance of that being imputed to one, which is contracted by another; and of one becoming answerable for another, by a voluntary engagement, that he might be freed from the punishment due to his crimes, according to the doctrine that Christ of his own will bore the punishment of our sins, that we might receive the reward of his righteousness. Philemon was Paul's son in the faith, yet he entreated him as a brother. Onesimus was a poor slave, yet Paul besought for him as if seeking some great thing for himself. Christians should do what may give joy to the hearts of one another. From the world they expect trouble; they should find comfort and joy in one another. When any of our mercies are taken away, our trust and hope must be in God. We must diligently use the means, and if no other should be at hand, abound in prayer. Yet, though prayer prevails, it does not merit the things obtained. And if Christians do not meet on earth, still the grace of the Lord Jesus will be with their spirits, and they will soon meet before the throne to join for ever in admiring the riches of redeeming love. The example of Onesimus may encourage the vilest sinners to return to God, but it is shamefully prevented, if any are made bold thereby to persist in evil courses. Are not many taken away in their sins, while others become more hardened? Resist not present convictions, lest they return no more.
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