Submission by Margaret Armanious
Suppose you were to open your mailbox and spot an unusual piece of mail. A glimpse of your name, handwritten in calligraphy, tells you this isn’t just another bill. Pushing aside the junk mail like tares from the wheat, you snatch the envelope and open the gold-lined seal to find. . .
It is from a friend and offers you the chance to mend a broken relationship.
You may scoff, “An invitation to forgive? Why would anyone want an invitation like that?”
And yet, that is exactly the type of invitation the Apostle Paul presents in his letter to Philemon. In a manner that is both brilliant and appealing, Paul urges Philemon to take back his runaway slave, Onesimus. He challenges Philemon to see forgiveness as a privilege, an invitation to be accepted or declined. It was Philemon’s choice to make.
Would Philemon have the character to see past his anger to the benefits the invitation offered him, or would he hang on to resentment and miss the blessing?
This verse-by-verse Bible Study is for anyone who struggles with forgiveness or longs for reconciliation in broken relationships. It addresses and examines the dynamics of forgiveness, such as:
- Can true forgiveness ever be commanded?
- Does loyalty and harmony come by compulsion?
- What is the character of someone who forgives?
- On what basis should we forgive someone who has offended us?
This study not only sheds light on the answers to these questions but also presents the Biblical principles on which they are based. It is written in an easy-to-read, interactive format, guiding the reader to identify his own invitation to forgive—an invitation ultimately written to all of us.
About Margaret Armanious
Armanious is an administrative assistant and makes her home in Houston, TX. She expresses her passion for God’s Word by writing interactive Bible studies, devotions, and maintaining her blog, Ministry in Words. Armanious has also written numerous articles for Christian online magazines and has been recognized for her award-winning short stories. Armanious seeks to encourage Christians to draw closer to the Lord through daily prayer and in-depth Bible study.