Author: Patricia St. John
Publisher: Christian Focus Publications
Onesimus wanted what any young boy wants: fun, adventure, travel, love, and most of all, freedom. Unfortunately, Onesimus’s life did not include any of these things. Instead, he was a servant to the wealthy Philemon and his family. Sure, his life was not as hard as it could be, but being a servant did not include any of the things he wanted in life. Even on days when he got glimpses of those things – like the visit from the beautiful Eirene of Laodicea – he was always swiftly reminded of how trapped he was. His life was out of his hands. That is, until the day Master Philemon and his son Archippus take Onesimus on a journey to Ephesus that changes his life forever. While there, the trio meet an odd man telling of the way to real freedom, to truth, and the only way to eternal life. But when a riot breaks out, Onesimus seizes his opportunity to make his own way to freedom.
His journey will take him all cross the Anatolia, Greece, and finally to Rome, and along the way realize what his dreams of adventure and love really look like. He will come across many familiar historical figures, like Epaphras, Demetrius, Appia, Priscilla, Mark, and so many more, some who bring him further from the truth and others closer to it. Along the way, Onesimus will get his adventure and – much as he will grow to despise it – will also learn what true love means and what real freedom is. Before his journey is over, he will be confronted with a truth that will change this slave boy into a man worthy to serve his Master.
Twice Freed by Patricia St. John retells the story of Onesimus in an exciting and fascinating way. The reader not only gets to learn about who he was but also what it might have been like to be a Gentile or a Christian during this time. This short piece of historical fiction takes the reader on a journey with one of the most intriguing characters of the New Testament but is seldom discussed. This well-researched book will travel though the Roman World and show what it was like for those who lived in it from all walks of life. Most of all, it teaches the reader, as the journey did Onesimus, what true freedom really means, and the importance of repentance and forgiveness. This story is a great read for anyone, young and old, who loves historical fiction, adventure, and tales that teach while they entertain – which this novel certainly does!
Blessings to you and yours,