• Final Greetings for Philemon Devotional

    Philemon 23-25

    We who profess the name of Christ must follow Him even when He gives rules we do not like. People who are tempted to commit homosexual acts may not like the call to turn from these deeds, but if they are to follow Jesus, turn from them they must. We may prefer to gossip, commit adultery, lie, cheat, or steal, but turn from these acts we must if we want to be the Lord’s disciples. God’s Word is our standard, not our likes and dislikes. View Resource

  • Going Above and Beyond Devotional

    Philemon 21-22

    Though the Bible allowed provisions for indentured servitude, which was a humane alternative to such harsh punishments for failure to pay one’s debts, such as debtor prisons, nevertheless the seeds for the abolishment for all forms of slavery were clearly sown in the New Testament. Church history evidences the impact of Christianity on the abolition of slavery as believers live out these implications of the gospel message. View Resource

  • Free Consent Devotional

    Philemon 14

    Today’s passage reminds us, as John Calvin says, that “no sacrifices are acceptable to God but those which are freely offered.” Because we still struggle with the presence of sin in our hearts and minds, we must daily be working to nurture godly motivations for our good works. Daily we should be praying that the Lord would fill us with a love for Him and our neighbors that would move us to do what is right without compulsion. View Resource

  • Onesimus’ Return Devotional

    Philemon 11-13

    Do you have relationships with other believers that would enable you to say with Paul that you would be sending away your “heart” if you were to move or otherwise lose the chance for face-to-face fellowship? God did not make us to function alone as believers, and we all need close Christian friendships to help us grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ Jesus. What are you doing to forge these relationships? View Resource

  • Sin’s Reality and the Ideal Devotional

    Philemon 8

    As today’s study shows, understanding the cultural background of a passage in Scripture is important to figuring out why an author says what he says. In turn, as we hope to show in future studies, knowing this historical context also helps us apply today those texts that discuss difficult issues, such as slavery. Good resources, such as a basic Bible dictionary and encyclopedia can help any Christian learn more about the background of a biblical passage. View Resource

  • Joy and Comfort in Christ Devotional

    Philemon 7

    As we think about the believers in days gone by, it is always important that we acknowledge the truth about the things that they did. We do these believers no favors if we pretend that participation in ungodly systems of kidnapping and racism was not so bad simply because they may have been exemplary in other matters. At the same time, we should beware of judging them too harshly, for none of us lives out the gospel’s implications perfectly. View Resource

  • To Philemon and Company Devotional

    Philemon 1-3

    Take some time today to read through the entire epistle to Philemon. Consider how the different aspects of the letter combine to present Paul’s argument. Pick a verse or two to meditate upon; repeat it to yourself a few times and think on what it might mean. Pray that our time together in this epistle would help us to learn many helpful ways to grow in Christ and to develop a new appreciation for this important part of God’s Word. View Resource

  • Just and Fair Masters Devotional

    Colossians 4:1

    By way of application, those who are managers or who otherwise supervise people should keep in mind the principle behind the proper treatment of slaves by masters. Employees are not to be regarded as mere cogs in a machine, and Christian supervisors must treat them as people with real needs, hopes, and desires, and not simply as those whose only value is how much they add to or take away from the bottom line. View Resource

  • No Favored Parties Devotional

    Colossians 3:25

    We can be tempted to make excuses for our behavior based on our backgrounds or conditions in which we find ourselves. But we must always remember that the Lord requires righteousness from us no matter our condition, and we must strive to obey Him even when it is costly or difficult. Are you making excuses for laziness on the job or any other failure? Repent of this sin today and pray that the Lord would help you to do what is right. View Resource

  • Conceited Know-Nothings Devotional

    1 Timothy 6:2b-4a

    It can be easy to know all of the right methods for interpreting the Word of God and yet at the same time not obey its precepts. This happens all too often in the Christian community when believers, consciously or not, think they can get away with taking advantage of other believers because they are brothers and sisters in Christ. Our services to each other, however, should be of the highest quality, for we should best understand the dignity of others. View Resource

  • Christian Slaves and Masters Devotional

    1 Timothy 6:1-2a

    Dr. John MacArthur writes, “Displaying a proper attitude of submission and respect, and performing quality work, help make the gospel believable” (The MacArthur Bible Commentary, p. 1,797). Those who profess Christ and yet are insubordinate to their employers or lazy are a poor witness to the unbelieving world. Jesus demands His people to aim for the highest standards, and so believers should be the most diligent and thoughtful workers of all. View Resource

  • The Slavery of the Flesh Devotional

    Galatians 4:8–11

    Martin Luther writes, “Whoever then seeketh righteousness by the law, imagining that God being angry and threatening must be pacified with works, can never find so many good works as are able to quiet his conscience, but still desires more.” In addition to being bound to sin, those who try earning their justification through works are enslaved to a guilty conscience that never lets up. Only if we confess our inability to please God can we find freedom in Christ. View Resource

  • The Law and Slavery Devotional

    Galatians 3:26–4:20

    How many of us are really comfortable with the level of Christian growth we have attained at this point in our lives? Would God’s assessment of our level of maturity bring honor or shame? While you yet have time, ask God to increase your zeal for Christian growth in character, grace, knowledge, and love of Christ. View Resource