However, Paul has befriended him and Onesimus has become very important to Paul. Paul writes to Philemon asking that Onesimus be set free and he goes on to say that if Onesimus has caused Philemon any loss that Paul would be responsible for that loss.
What we see in this letter is a great example of Christian love and how the relationship between Christians should be. I wonder how much better this world would be if we all treated each other the way Paul is asking Philemon to treat Onesimus? We, as Christians must look for reason to forgive rather than reasons to not forgive. Churches split over this very issue – the inability to forgive. We are right, they are wrong—the end of the story (and a lack of Christian love).
God never expects us to be robots, all believing and doing exactly the same thing. We are made individuals with a freedom to choose. I believe we become so hung up on things that are not important (like the details as to how we are to interpret scripture and how we are to treat others) that we forget what is really important – proclaiming Jesus as lord of our lives and really meaning it. Here we go again with the word “lord.” What God wants is for us to make Christ the “lord” of our life as in the master of a slave. He does not want us to confess the Jesus is God – that
is much different!
When we really make Christ “lord,” we take the position of a slave or servant to Christ. We set aside petty differences and we concentrate on what it means to love one another as Christ has loved us. When we do that, we begin to practice true Christian love and we do become one body with Christ as the head of that body. My hope is that you are experiencing that kind of true Christian love. If you are not, find one of the area churches this Sunday and they will help you find that kind of deep and pure Christian love. Amen.