Philemon – Will You Let My People Go?

Paul wrote Philemon about his former slave Onesimus. More than likely Onesimus had run away from Philemon, a crime punishable by death. While in prison, Paul led Onesimus to faith in Christ. Paul sent him back and asked Philemon to give Onesimus his freedom as a fellow brother in Christ.

The Scriptures reveal God as the One who frees the enslaved. N.T. Wright calls this brief letter “a ticking time bomb” for the abolition of slavery. All are invited into the Kingdom of God regardless of their station in life.

Slavery 2,000 years ago was prevalent with 80% of the Roman world enslaved. For some this was the only way to have a place to live or food to eat.

Onesimus whose name means “Useful” delivered this letter to Philemon. Paul invited Philemon to do something extremely counter cultural and more in line with the heart of God who created all human beings in His image.

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