This month in our Donuts and Doctrine study we had the blessing of looking closely at that little gem of a letter called Philemon.
As the Apostle Paul appeals to this man Philemon, for him to forgive his runaway slave and send him back to him so that he might help in the proclamation of the Gospel we see some important aspects of that very Gospel. Do I reflect the forgiveness that Christ has shown me when I am offended by someone else? What is the cost of unforgiveness? What is the benefit of acknowledging that every good thing in me is a gift from Him?
Paul tells Philemon in verse 6 what one benefit will be. Philemon 6 “that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.” Taking the opportunities that are presented by offenses and turning them around by forgiving those who offend can actually amplify the Gospel in our lives making our message more effective. That is a truth that I wish we could all get a hold of, looking at offenses as opportunities.
I pray that as you listen to this message that God would reveal to you your own heart on the matter and that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.
Audio of this message is available by clicking on the link below.
I preached at Grace Bible Church in St. Clair, MI back in May of 2009. The sermon is a bit different. You can hear that too.