Philemon Scriptures and Review Questions 
©2000-2021 by Arlo E. Moehlenpah

To read in another version or listen to Philemon click here. In the top box type "Phile". Also, select the version and then click the "Search the Bible" button. For the NT only the CEV, ESV,  NASB & NIV versions have voice available. After listening to and/or reading the scripture please answer the related review questions below.


Philemon had a slave by the name of Onesimus who apparently robbed him, ran away, and fled to Rome where he was converted under the ministry of Paul. Whereas Paul found Onesimus beneficial, he would not keep him without Philemon’s consent. Thus Paul sent Onesimus back to Philemon urging him to receive Onesimus as a brother and as he would receive Paul himself.

Philemon 1-7 - To listen as you read click the version, ESV or NIV, then the sound symbol & wait about 30 sec.
Philemon 1 Paul, a prisoner of Jesus Christ, and Timothy our brother, unto Philemon our dearly beloved, and fellowlabourer,
2 And to our beloved Apphia, and Archippus our fellowsoldier, and to the church in thy house:
3 Grace to you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 I thank my God, making mention of thee always in my prayers,
5 Hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord Jesus, and toward all saints;
6 That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.
7 For we have great joy and consolation in thy love, because the bowels of the saints are refreshed by thee, brother.


1. Who was the author of this epistle? (1)

2. What descriptive title does the author give himself? (1)

3. In what verses in did Paul refer to his imprisonment (1,9,13)

4. What could the addition of Timothy's name imply?

5. To whom was this epistle primarily addressed? (1)

6. What are some things we know about Philemon? (1,2,5-7,15-16)

7. What do we know about Archippus? (2)

8. What is the significance of the order "grace and peace"? (3)

9. Show how Paul's thanksgiving of Philemon was Godward, personal, and continual.(4)

10. For what did Paul give thanks in regards to Philemon? (4-7)

11. Why would Paul rejoice when others are refreshed? (7)  



Philemon 8-16 - To listen as you read click the version, ESV or NIV, then the sound symbol & wait about 30 sec.
8 Wherefore, though I might be much bold in Christ to enjoin thee that which is convenient,
9 Yet for love's sake I rather beseech thee, being such an one as Paul the aged, and now also a prisoner of Jesus Christ.
10 I beseech thee for my son Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my bonds:
11 Which in time past was to thee unprofitable, but now profitable to thee and to me:
12 Whom I have sent again: thou therefore receive him, that is, mine own bowels:
13 Whom I would have retained with me, that in thy stead he might have ministered unto me in the bonds of the gospel:
14 But without thy mind would I do nothing; that thy benefit should not be as it were of necessity, but willingly.
15 For perhaps he therefore departed for a season, that thou shouldest receive him for ever;
16 Not now as a servant, but above a servant, a brother beloved, specially to me, but how much more unto thee, both in the flesh, and in the Lord?


12. What two avenues of approach lay open to Paul when he decided to appeal to Philemon on behalf of Onesimus? (8-9)

13. What two points about himself did Paul make as an intercessor? (9)

14. What relationship did Paul claim between himself and Onesimus? (10)

15. From a selfish standpoint why was it difficult for Paul to send Onesimus back to Philemon? (13)

16. What can be said about Paul's ethical principles? (14)

17. How did Paul suggest the probability of divine providence in the departing of Onesimus? (15-16)

18. In what two ways did Paul ask Philemon to receive Onesimus? (16-17)

19. How did Paul deliver a death blow to the institution of slavery? (16)  





Philemon 17-25 - To listen as you read click the version, ESV or NIV, then the sound symbol & wait about 30 sec.
17 If thou count me therefore a partner, receive him as myself.
18 If he hath wronged thee, or oweth thee ought, put that on mine account;
19 I Paul have written it with mine own hand, I will repay it: albeit I do not say to thee how thou owest unto me even thine own self besides.
20 Yea, brother, let me have joy of thee in the Lord: refresh my bowels in the Lord.
21 Having confidence in thy obedience I wrote unto thee, knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.
22 But withal prepare me also a lodging: for I trust that through your prayers I shall be given unto you.
23 There salute thee Epaphras, my fellowprisoner in Christ Jesus;
24 Marcus, Aristarchus, Demas, Lucas, my fellowlabourers.
25 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

20. What perhaps prompted the phrases, "If he has wronged you or owes anything'? (18)

21. What shows that Paul believed in making things right wherever possible? (18-19)

22. What infers that Philemon also was a convert of Paul? (19)

23. What do you think Paul meant when he wrote, "knowing that you will do even more than I say?" (21)

24. In addition to appealing for Onesimus, what other thing did Paul request of Philemon? (22)

25. What did Paul trust would be the result of Philemon's prayer? (22)

26. Who else sent greetings to Philemon? (23-24)

27. What was Paul's final prayer in this epistle? (25)


Discussion Questions


1. What are some possible meanings of the phrase " the church in your house"?

2. What are some practical applications that you personally can make from this epistle?

3. If one would consider this epistle to be a parable, who would the main characters be types of, and why? 


Answers for Philemon study questions


Quiz on Philemon



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