Part 2: Love Is the Target

Philemon 8-16

Gathering Question: 

When was a time when you played thee role of a reconciler, approaching someone on behalf of another person. What were your hopes? What were your fears? How did you decide what approach to take? 

Or, if you’d rather, recall a time when someone approached you on behalf of another person. What did you think at first? What made the person persuasive? How did you respond? 

Gathering Prayer. 


  • What stood out to you in the sermon? What insights did you gain? What questions did it raise?
  • Why do you think this short letter related to a specific relationship problem is included in the Bible? 

Philemon 11 Formerly he was useless to you, but now he has become useful both to you and to me.

  • When has an apparent loss led you to recognize God at work? 

Philemon 12 I am sending him—who is my very heart—back to you. 

  • What do you think Onesimus felt as he returned to Philemon? 
  • What do you think Philemon felt as Onesimus returned? 

Philemon 15-16 Perhaps the reason he was separated from you for a little while was that you might have him back forever— no longer as a slave, but better than a slave, as a dear brother. He is very dear to me but even dearer to you, both as a fellow man and as a brother in the Lord.

  • How should someone’s commitment to Christ change our relationship with them? 

Unity is a choice. 

  • What are some ways we destroy unity in Christ? 
  • We choose unity when we forgive, serve, support, pray for others, build relationships, and build others up with our words. What are some ways that you feel God might be leading you to choose to build unity? 

Closing Prayer: 

Pray for the unity of our church that we all may do our part to build unity.