Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
I have had great joy and encouragement because of your love, for the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you, brother. Philemon 7
Philemon had a slave whose name was Onesimus, who had run away. Though we do not know how it happened, Onesimus had found Paul. It is possible that Paul had taught him the truth since he refers to himself as Onesimus’s spiritual father.
Philemon was a dear friend of Paul. The church met in his house. Paul had heard from others of his love for the saints and how he had been an encouragement to them.
Even though Paul had wanted to keep him there, he sent Onesimus back to Philemon. Paul appealed to Philemon’s love to accept Onesimus back and even to consider anything that he might have defrauded to be paid by Paul. He expected Philemon to do the right thing regarding Onesimus and felt assured that he would do just that.
Paul had great confidence that Philemon would do the right thing. So often, we lack the confidence in our brethren to do the right thing. Perhaps we should have better expectations of others.