Monday, July 30, 2007


Matthew 6:14-15 For if you forgive people their wrongdoing, your heavenly Father will forgive you as well. But if you don't forgive people, your heavenly Father will not forgive you your wrongdoing.
Matthew 6:14-15

Forgiveness. This is one of the hardest things for us to do, yet this is exactly what we are commanded to do as followers of Jesus. These verses here are referring back to verse 12, which is part of the model prayer, where Jesus taught us to pray "forgive us our debts, as we have forgiven our debtors." Does this mean that the forgiveness of our sin, our debt to God, is based upon our own forgiveness of others? Not at all, but if we are not forgiving to others it may be an indication that we have never experienced the forgiveness that God has offered to us. John MacArthur says, "An unforgiving spirit not only is inconsistent for one who has been totally forgiven by God, but also brings the chastening of God rather than His mercy."

Later in the book of Matthew Jesus tells us a parable to further illustrate this point.

For this reason, the kingdom of heaven can be compared to a king who wanted to settle accounts with his slaves. When he began to settle accounts, one who owed 10,000 talents was brought before him.Since he had no way to pay it back, his master commanded that he, his wife, his children, and everything he had be sold to pay the debt. At this, the slave fell facedown before him and said, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you everything!’Then the master of that slave had compassion, released him, and forgave him the loan. “But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him 100 denarii. He grabbed him, started choking him, and said, ‘Pay what you owe!’ “At this, his fellow slave fell down and began begging him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’ But he wasn’t willing. On the contrary, he went and threw him into prison until he could pay what was owed. When the other slaves saw what had taken place, they were deeply distressed and went and reported to their master everything that had happened. “Then, after he had summoned him, his master said to him, ‘You wicked slave! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me. Shouldn’t you also have had mercy on your fellow slave, as I had mercy on you? ’ And his master got angry and handed him over to the jailers until he could pay everything that was owed. So My heavenly Father will also do to you if each of you does not forgive his brother from his heart.”
Matthew 18:23-35

Forgiveness is essential to the Christian life; God has forgiven us so much, shouldn't we also for give others?
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