We are going to begin this morning a study of a brand new book in the New Testament, the book of Philemon, and I want you to turn to it. It’s just very brief, one chapter, 25 verses, a lesson on forgiveness. The little book of Philemon, for those of you who are wandering around in the index of your Bible, is tucked between Titus and Hebrews.
Of all of the human qualities that make men in any sense like God, none is more divine than forgiveness. God is a God of forgiveness. In fact, in Exodus chapter 34, God identifies Himself in that way. Verse 6 says, “Then the Lord passed by in front of Him and proclaimed” – this is the Lord speaking of Himself – “‘The Lord, the Lord God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in loving kindness and truth, who keeps loving kindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin.” He says, “I am the God of forgiveness, that is who I am.” Solomon said, “It is a man’s glory to overlook a transgression,” Proverbs 19:11. Man is never more like God than when he forgives.
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