Outline—Philemon 8–14

  1. Appeal based upon the work (vv. 8–9)—proper priorities
  2. Appeal on behalf of people (vv. 10–11)—Christ captured
  3. Appeal driven by godly relationships (vv. 12–13)—brotherly bonds
  4. Appeal harmoniously turned to high ethics (v. 14)—heavenly habits

Observations on Tact

  • Tact (touch) is thoughtful application of other-centeredness in all relationships.
  • In the Christian context, it is founded in a proper understanding of the image of God borne by the image-bearer to other image-bearers.
  • It is the application of Christian grace to all men (in honor preferring one another, owe no man anything but to love him, speak the truth in love, etc.).
  • Tact is a task.
  • Tact is an obligation.
  • Tact is an act of worship.
  • Tact is an act of service.
  • Tact is an act of obedience.
  • Tact is an act of faithfulness.
  • Tact is an act of competence.
  • Tact is an act of self-control.
  • Tact is an act of compassion.
  • Tact is an act of grace.

Take Home Points

  • There is no excuse for the Christian to be nasty to others.
  • There is every excuse for the Christian to display the fruit of the Spirit.
  • Make it your aim to do God’s work in God’s way for God’s glorious results.

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