This post is Day 13 in a series of studies about “Philemon”. I strongly suggest you begin with the introduction to this study, please click here to read it.

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Philemon – Day 13

Philemon 14

But I did not want to do anything without your consent, so that any favour you do would not seem forced but would be voluntary.

The Thought

This verse makes me think of my childhood and youth. I remember people giving me a choice which went like this:- “You can have whichever you like, but take this one!” Or something similar. Paul is asking Philemon for a favour, and saying it’s your choice, but please do this!!

In the Message Bible this verse reads But I don’t want to do anything behind your back, make you do a good deed you hadn’t agreed to. Paul is trying to be open and honest, but we must also remember that this former slave had been serving Paul well during his time in prison. They obviously appreciated each other.

We can also imagine that Paul didn’t want to encourage Onesimus to go back to Colossae if his old employer was not going to be friendly and forgiving. Paul is anticipating a positive response from this church leader and it is Onesimus that carries the letter to Philemon. We do not have any idea if these things went according to Paul’s plan. There is not a closing post script that says, “…and Philemon forgave Onesimus, took him back into his old position and they all lived happily ever after.”


Think today about persuasive tactics that you use. Are they the same with everyone, or are there people who you know you cannot influence once they have decided something?

Ask yourself if you are a schemer sometimes!

Today, the world wide media is constantly trying to persuade us that we must buy this or that product, or believe this or that news item.

Pray today for the mountain of media, for the world of films, television and radio. Pray for Christians to take control of these powerful influencers.

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