Devotions for June 16, 2017

MATTHEW 18:21-35

Parable of the Unforgiving Debtor
21 Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone[a] who sins against me? Seven times?”

22 “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven![b]

23 “Therefore, the Kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a king who decided to bring his accounts up to date with servants who had borrowed money from him. 24 In the process, one of his debtors was brought in who owed him millions of dollars.[c] 25 He couldn’t pay, so his master ordered that he be sold—along with his wife, his children, and everything he owned—to pay the debt.

26 “But the man fell down before his master and begged him, ‘Please, be patient with me, and I will pay it all.’ 27 Then his master was filled with pity for him, and he released him and forgave his debt.

28 “But when the man left the king, he went to a fellow servant who owed him a few thousand dollars.[d] He grabbed him by the throat and demanded instant payment.

29 “His fellow servant fell down before him and begged for a little more time. ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it,’ he pleaded. 30 But his creditor wouldn’t wait. He had the man arrested and put in prison until the debt could be paid in full.

31 “When some of the other servants saw this, they were very upset. They went to the king and told him everything that had happened. 32 Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, ‘You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me. 33 Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?’ 34 Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt.

35 “That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters[e] from your heart.”

LOVING LIKE THE KING

Maybe Peter was expecting a simple answer: “Just forgive him 7 times. That should be enough.” Instead, Jesus uses a powerful parable to get to the heart of forgiveness.

PERSONAL REFLECTION

Q: Why was the servant unable to forgive small debts even though he was forgiven a massive one by the King? Why do humans tend to act this way?

Q: Have you fully embraced the total forgiveness of Christ, that He paid your massive debt of sin with His own blood? If not, what is hindering you?

Q: Think about someone who has left a deep emotional cut (or scar) in your life. Even though it still hurts, how can you love them like the King?

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