The 4th of Paul’s so-called “Prison Epistles,” this personal letter to Philemon is the shortest of Paul’s writings, but it is perhaps the most self-revealing. Written from Rome during A.D. 60-62, Paul had met a runaway slave in Rome named Onesimus, owned by a man from Colossae named Philemon, an acquaintance of Paul’s. Under Paul’s tutelage, Onesimus had become a believer. There’s only one problem: Onesimus is a runaway slave and a wanted felon. Paul writes a very personal letter to Philemon, urging him—as one believer to another—to take Onesimus back, no longer as a slave, but as a free man and a brother in Christ. This short letter displays Paul at his rhetorical best, as he cajoles Philemon into do what is right. Oh, and by the way, Paul notes that he’ll be stopping by for a visit just to make sure Philemon does so!
Dr. Bill Creasy's lecture on the chapter of Philemon makes clear, with warmth and intellect, the political and religious significance of the shortest epistle in the bible. In this, one of the most fascinating of Paul's New Testament epistles, Paul turns the Roman institution of slavery inside out, insisting that a brother in Christ cannot also be a slave. Paul asks Philemon to free his newly converted slave Onesimus because of these principles. Dr. Creasy once again give listeners a fresh experience with the bible, drawing on political and historical context to make his point.
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Another Great Lecture Series From Dr. Bill Creasy
- Kenneth N. Peach