Paul, here is challenging Philemon to move from being a recipient of grace freely given to him to being a generous dispenser of grace to Onesimus who, like him, does not deserve it. Onesimus has run away from Philemon, risking the death penalty if captured. In the meantime, Onesimus has met Paul who has introduced him to Jesus.Read More
Most of us know the sense that change is about to take place, and we are not sure where that will lead. Perhaps pressure at work from someone senior saying we should move on, or from personal dissatisfaction that seems to say we’ve served our usefulness, causes us to start looking at job boards and down-loading applications.Read More God’s call, servanthood
The conundrum is resolved by understanding that the letter was a circular one, written to the churches of Asia Minor. What we have is a copy, that was sent on to Ephesus – the name Ephesus being added to denote its destination. For this reason, we must be careful we don’t interpret Ephesians strictly through the lens of Ephesus’ culture and religion alone.Read More unlimited resources, resurrection power
Isn’t it uncomfortable when old friends turn up who knew you before you came to faith in Christ? Without knowing what has happened to you, they try to pick up the threads of the old relationship when, as Paul puts it, you were “dead” because of your sins (v.1).
When Paul describes his readers as having been “dead” (v.1), he uses imagery that is very powerful for the Jew …Read More Kingdom of Darkness, Kingdom of Light
Paul paints an incredible picture in this passage. We see a master builder at work: demolishing, laying foundations, putting in a cornerstone and building up walls to produce the grandest design of grand designs! The result is the most amazing temple, in which God dwells.Read More gentiles, the Church
The world can seem like an ugly place. Evil at times appears overwhelming, even unstoppable: it is easy to slip into the mindset that there is little hope. We look at the big picture and see random acts of terror destroying lives and societal trust. We look around us and find small acts of offense at almost every turn.Read More evil, sin, faithfulness
Imagine sitting in a venue of unimaginable size, with an audience made up of the peoples of all the ages. The buzz in the crowd is electrifying as anticipation reaches a climax and the God of the universe, the alpha and the omega, steps forward and in a booming voice announces, “Use common sense and sound judgment”. That’s it?!Read More common sense, sound judgment