Changed



#Changed Talk It Over Group Discussion Guide

Jesus always brought restoration to broken lives. Just as the demon-possessed man of Gerasenes was restored, so was Onesimus. The letter to Philemon was one of Paul's prison epistles, which he wrote while being held a prisoner in Rome. The book is about bondage and love, forgiveness and joy. This 4 week sermon series reveals how broken people are made whole again and the important part we play in the process.

1. Affirming the Changed - Philemon 1-7
Paul writes to his beloved brother, Philemon, thanks him for their relationship and his work for Christ, prays that he would be even more effective in that work, and encourages him for the results of his work.

2. Accommodating the Changed - Philemon 8-14
Having thanked and encouraged Philemon, Paul now intercedes on behalf of Onesimus, Philemon's runaway slave, Onesimus having come to Christ through Paul's ministry. Hence, Paul writes Philemon "brother to brother," not as an apostle.

3. Accepting the Changed - Philemon 15-18
Paul gently urges Philemon to be reconciled with Onesimus, who is a new creation, a "new man," in Christ, and to forgive him, allowing Onesimus's debt to be imputed to and paid by Paul (just as our sin debt was imputed to and paid by Christ).

4. Accountability for the Changed - Philemon 19-25
Philemon was likely converted through Paul's ministry; so as brothers, Paul could speak to Philemon with special love and remind him of his responsibility to Paul, which is as much a responsibility to Jesus, in regard to Onesimus.