This post is the first in a series of studies about “Philemon”.
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Philemon – Day 1
The seldom read book of Philemon is tucked in between the short letter to Titus and the long book of Hebrews. It has only 25 verses and is rarely talked about or used as a subject for a sermon in church services. It is a letter about a runaway slave.
Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, to Philemon our dear friend and fellow worker.
The seldom read book of Philemon is tucked in between the short letter to Titus and the long book of Hebrews. It has only 25 verses and is rarely talked about or used as a subject for a sermon in church services. A quick glance through the verses tells us that it is a letter about a runaway slave. This slave has met Paul and consequently become a Christian. The result of his conversion means that he is ready to return to his previous master and make right the wrongs he has done.
Paul was imprisoned in Rome. But here in his opening verse, he doesn’t describe himself as a prisoner of the Roman guard. Rather he describes himself as a prisoner of Jesus Christ! The apostle Paul had had the most dramatic of conversions when he was affronted by the voice of Jesus from Heaven. You can read that story in Acts 9:1-9. From that time on he became a preacher and teacher of the truth of Jesus. He had an interesting life as a travelling evangelist, speaking before people in high authority as well as to fellow prisoners.
Here, Paul appeals to Philemon as a dear friend and fellow worker. It is important to notice that Philemon was not perfect. He needed help and encouragement to forgive and re-instate this runaway slave.
Read the short book of Philemon today. Think about anyone you would want to send this message to.
How would you feel in Philemon’s place? Think too about some of our world leaders who are not living according to the Lord’s instructions. There are many who seem to be getting their ideas directly from the enemy. Pray for a dramatic conversion for them. It happened to Paul (Acts 9:1-9). It can happen to others today.
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