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Author Topic: Christ's Ways  (Read 6700 times)

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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #364 on: January 28, 2020, 07:02:46 am »
.
Philemon 1:1-25

In the little communiqué to his friend Philemon, Paul went to bat for a runaway slave named Onesimus. By all rights, Philemon could legally, under Roman law, put Onesimus to death; but as Onesimus' fellow believer, and his sibling around the table in God's home, Philemon was bound by a higher sense of duty and association.

Onesimus ran away prior to his conversion to Christianity. Had he been a Christian, he would have been mindful of Eph 6:5-8, Col 3:22-25, 1Tim 6:1- 2, and Titus 2:9-10a and not run away.

Now that Onesimus was a fellow believer, Philemon was obligated to comply with Eph 6:9a, and Col 4:1.

You know, I keep using words like "obligated" but though that word is appropriate, it shouldn't have to be emphasized because Christianity is supposed to be a religion of devotion rather than obligation to duty.

"By love serve one another." (Gal 5:13)

Israel's covenanted law requires people to love others as themselves; but Jesus commands his followers to love their fellow believers with the same degree of love with which he himself loves them.

"My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.: (John 15:12)

That being the case, it must have been very easy for Philemon to let bygones be bygones and welcome Onesimus back into his home.

When Onesimus became Philemon's fellow believer, the nature of their association took on a whole other dimension; viz: every one of the commands that I've posted up till now, in regards to believers associating with one another, came into play at the moment of Onesimus' conversion.

He and Philemon would never again relate to one another the same as before Onesimus' conversion. Where once Onesimus and Philemon were merely fellow men; in Christ they became siblings, and both will one day sit side by side, shoulder to shoulder as equals around the table in God's home.

"For perhaps he therefore departed for a season, that thou shouldest receive him for ever; not now as a slave, but above a slave, a brother beloved, specially to me, but how much more unto thee, both in the flesh, and in The Lord?" (Philem 1:15-16)

 As a conscientious Christian, Onesimus no doubt became a real asset because it wouldn't be necessary for Philemon to ever again beat an honest day's work out of him.

"All who are under the yoke of slavery should consider their masters worthy of full respect, so that God's name and our teaching may not be slandered. Those who have believing masters are not to show less respect for them because they are brothers. Instead, they are to serve them even better, because those who benefit from their service are believers, and dear to them." (1Tim 6:1-2)
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