The Church is an Uncommon Community
Shared June 15th, 2021; Updated June 15th, 2021
Main point summary
Paul Prays for Philemon because of the way his Love and Faith affected others, including him, the Prisoner. This is the way our Faith and Love should affect others, including the Lord.
a Paul, b a prisoner of c Christ Jesus, and d Timothy 1 our brother,
To Philemon our beloved brother and e fellow worker,
and to Apphia 1 a our sister,
and to b Archippus our c fellow soldier,
and to d the church in your house:
a Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
a I thank my God always,
making mention of you in my prayers,
because I a hear of your love
and of the faith which you have
toward the Lord Jesus
and toward all the 1 saints;
and I pray that the fellowship of your faith may become effective
1 through the a knowledge of every good thing which is in you
2 for Christ’s sake.
For I have come to have much a joy and comfort in your love,
because the 1 hearts of the 2 saints have been b refreshed through you, brother.
Paul does not refer to himself as an "apostle" in this letter. There was no need for it and this was not a situation where he wanted to and needed to assert his authority. Even of it did, he deliberately chose a different approach and strategy. One that was nobler and suited the Gospel and the Grace it mediates and communicates. Notice the way Paul referred to himself and the saints in this Houses Church. Note the relationship he had with them and the way he addressed them in terms of their relationships, roles and responsibilities. There is a dignity and respect that is missing on our churches today. His prayer wish and greeting to Philemon and his desire for Grace and Peace is equally matched in his prayer for him. How many times our wish for others is nothing more that pious platitudes and porous intentions and promises. Not so with Paul. He put his prayers where his heart was. He was family. He was a servant = His humility He valued others, recognized their contribution to the work of the Gospel. The church was one place or community where everyone mattered and had something to contribute.