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Notes On The Book Of Philemon

  1. This will be short because this is a short epistle. Paul writes a letter to Philemon, a Christian, asking him to forgive Onesimus, a slave who is helping Paul and who ran away from Philemon and appears to have wronged Philemon in some other manner as well, and to free Onesimus from slavery. Paul humbles himself and instead of commanding this release he asks Philemon as an act of love to release his brother Onesimus. I believe this epistle has great allegorical value as it admonishes all Christians to forgive our brothers of their wrongs and so release them from the debts they owe us. While this epistle does not make an explicit judgment on the owning of slaves by Christians, its very inclusion indicates that this practice is at the very least frowned upon, while also affirming that all Christians are ultimately slaves and servants to Christ.


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