Sound Teaching

This is the teaching site of the West Side church of Christ in Fort Worth, TX. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials were written and prepared by Stan Cox

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Mining The Scriptures: Philemon 1-7

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Philemon 1-7

At the beginning of Paul’s letter to Philemon, he was very complimentary of his friend and brother. He acknowledged the “love and faith” that he had toward “the Lord Jesus and toward all the saints.” He also mentioned the good things in Philemon’s character, and the fact that the brethren had been “refreshed” by his character and works.

His diplomacy had a very specific and important purpose. Paul desired that Philemon be receptive to his petition on behalf of Onesimus. By his kind words and solicitous manner, Paul influenced Philemon to do the right thing in accepting Onesimus back, not only as a slave, but as a “beloved brother” (vs. 16).

A distinction must be made. Paul was not “flattering” Philemon. Flattery is deceitful and insincere. Paul was honest and genuine in his praise of a worthy brother. Also, seeking to influence people to do right is very different from attempts to manipulate. It is different both in tactics and motivation. What Paul did in his praise of Philemon was good and right, and to be emulated by all Christians.