For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:14,15
Philemon was a wealthy Christian in the church at Colosse and he had become a believer by hearing the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Paul says regarding Philemon in verse 7 “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.”
Onesimus who was Philemon’s slave stole something from him and ran away from him. Onesimus came to Paul who was in prison at Rome because he might have known him when Paul visited Philemon’s place earlier. He was of great help to Paul in prison and there he became a believer. If a runway slave returns back to his master there are possibilities that he might be severely punished. Paul wanted to send Onesimus back to Philemon in order to enable a brotherly love between the master and slave. Paul wanted Philemon to welcome Onesimus as he would have welcome him and charge anything to him whatever Onesimus owed to Philemon.
We pray “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. Matthew 6:12” If we do not forgive others from our heart, God cannot forgive us. When we come forward and forgive others first, God will move in their heart and bring a reconciliation. Take a first step today if you haven’t forgiven anyone in the past. Our Lord is surely delighted in it! Amen!