Heavenly Father, we acknowledged that You are Jehovah Rapha, Jehovah Rohi, Jehovah Jireh, and Jehovah Nissi. We confessed our sins before You and pray for forgiveness. We pray for You Word to minster to us and enlighten us, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Philemon: 23-25, Final greetings
VV 23-25, 23 Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, greets you, 24 as do Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, Luke, my fellow laborers. 25 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
Paul had a personal touch. He acknowledged all his co-workers by name. He sent greetings to Philemon from Epaphras, Mark, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, his co-workers in the gospel. Epaphras was also a prisoner with him in the Roman prison.
He pronounced the grace of Christ to Philemon.
According to Christian traditions, Onesimus was freed from slavery and went on to become a bishop of Ephesus. He was arrested, tortured, and beaten to death by the Romans for preaching the gospel. Onesimus was a real person, transformed, and freed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He suffered tremendous persecutions and eventually martyred for his faith in Christ. The epistle of Philemon is a good illustration of Romans 8:28 at work in the life of Onesimus. He was a slave. He committed a capital offence by running away from his master. Though God’s providence, he ran to Rome and met the great apostle Paul. Paul saved his soul, gave him a new life, new faith, new hope, and new beginning. Reconciled to his old master Philemon and freed from slavery, he served his new master Jesus Christ.
Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose”.
The epistle of Philemon taught us that all things worked together for good to Christians. No matter what circumstances we may be facing today it will eventually worked for good in our favour. We may not see it immediately but we will see it in the future. This is a promise that we can claim when we go through difficult times especially now when situations are so unprecedented.
Heavenly Father, thank You for the epistle of Philemon. Thank You for the promise of Romans 8:28. Thank You for for the forgiveness of sins, salvation by grace, justification by faith in Christ, sanctification, and the gift of eternal life. We pray for those who have run away from You to return back to You and be useful to You in the kingdom again, in Jesus’ name, Amen.