Philemon 4-7 The Refreshers

In our text this week we have the testimony of Philemon, the prayer Philemon needed, and the love of Philemon…

Paul says, “I thank God” for you. Imagine having a testimony so strong in the Lord that Paul would thank God for you! That was Philemon. His testimony was so strong that it stirred Paul to pray for him, not just every now and then, but always. His testimony was steeped in love; also his testimony was that he was strong in faith.

Strong in love and faith yet Philemon still needed prayer; no matter how strong we may think we are we need the prayers of the saints. This is actually the prayer that every strong believer needs. Verse 6 is somewhat complex because it has so much packed into one verse. Simply stated, Paul is asking God to help Philemon to share his faith more and more effectively. Notice that “every good thing” is said to be in Philemon. It is those good things that Paul prays for others to acknowledge and desire in their own lives.

What are those good things? They would, no doubt, be the fruit of the Spirit, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The good things would also include life, both abundant and eternal life and the glorious hope of living forever in a new heavens and earth with Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore, the great need of every believer is for prayer; prayer that God will help us share the good things and the hope that we have in Christ.

We also need to be a loving people, Philemon was apparently a man who loved everyone and proved it by helping others. He was a man of compassion and grace who was committed to help those who had need. He refreshed them. Do you refresh people or depress people?

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One thought on “Philemon 4-7 The Refreshers

  1. I don’t know if whether we bless others or depress others is the question needed here from this verse. We don’t want to shame others as they read what we have written in the scriptures. Philemon is a book written to a home church in love and gratitude. It is also about “Onesimus,” an ordinary slave who refreshed Paul, as prisoner. The love between the two was so deep that Paul referred to him as; “My very heart.” The question is do we treasure those who serve us as our very heart. Are we affirming others in their position in Christ Jesus and are we mindful of their daily struggles,are we involved with them as they struggle? Are we thanking GOD for those whom He has given to us in our life’s circle? Do we respect those in authority, as well as those GOD places into our lives. Are we so sensitive that we don’t want to cause an offense to others in anyway, even to make a decision which includes others without their consent? This is what great value Paul placed on his relationships to the members in the churches and it rings loudly in all of his letters. Paul, actually the Holy Spirit through his writing shows us that people, in Jesus Christ, and in relation to Him is utmost. Certainly, we will depress others at times we are imperfect, and when life cuts us deeply it has an affect on the whole unit. During those times it is our responsibility, when we are strong in peace, and faith, to cover our brother’s sin and carry him or her to the end of their difficult time. The healthiest message is not one that shames or blames but restores such a one. If one is a brother this is our responsibility, no matter what, unless helping causes us to stumble. That is when we back off and pray as if the one’s life depends upon our intercessory prayer.

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