The following reimagines the book of Philemon as a text message exchange.
Paul is in Prison (most likely in Rome). He becomes acquainted with another prisoner by the name of Onesimus, who is a runaway slave. Onesimus becomes a Christian and Paul advises him that he must face the consequences of fleeing his master. His master, however, is Philemon, a leader at the Church of Colossian (which today would be in Turkey), who Paul knows.
Paul writes Philemon and advises him that Onesimus has become a Christian, and that he should not be harsh with him when he returns. Paul calls on Philemon to treat him as a brother.
Instead of preaching or lecturing Philemon about why it would be wrong to treat Onesimus poorly when he returns, Paul praises Philemon and uses flattery—which was Paul's way of showing that love and grace can do more to change the heart of someone than harsh words ever will. The letter references Apphia, who is thought by many to be Philemon’s wife; and Archippus, who most people believe is Philemon's son.