Sun, Jan 10, 2021
Teacher: Zorina Smith Series: Memes of the Bible Scripture: Matthew 18:21-35
Jesus, he loves you tremendously, and he has forgiven you a debt so large that we really cannot tangibly fathom.
So let’s keep that at the forefront of our minds.
21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”
22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.
23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him.
(These bags of gold were today’s equivalent to about 6 billion dollars.)
25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.
26 “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.
28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.
(Closer to the equivalent of about 12 thousand dollars.)
29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’
30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.
32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.
35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”
According to Jewish law they could not “beseech forgiveness from another more than three times,” meaning the offender could not ask the offended for or expect forgiveness after any longer after a third offense occurs,
15 “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.
18 “Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
19 “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.
So just before Peter asks his question Jesus has literally just placed tremendous power on the unity of believers and declaring enormous WORTH in fighting for it.
If you wait until you feel forgiving, then you will never actually forgive.
Choosing to live with the consequences means we’re choosing that this person means more to me than the pain that I feel.
It’s not just, it’s not fair, and it doesn’t feel right, but because of the forgiveness that Jesus offers, it IS right.
Choosing to live with the consequences of someone else’s sin, means that you first have to acknowledge that the sin and the consequences exist because our sin does affect the people around us.
If we are passively accepting sin in each other’s lives, then we're the ones doing the hurting because we are decidedly not helping. If we actually truly love these people the way we say we do, the way God has called us to, then how on earth could we just passively accept the sin between us without at least addressing it, let alone forgiving it.
“Forgetting” sin, leads to destructive patterns.
Don’t forget. Celebrate the victory of Jesus in the midst of forgiveness that you have worked through. Celebrate the repentance and restoration in relationship with one another.
Jesus has already suffered the ultimate consequence in order to forgive you, and them, and anyone else who may hurt us in the future. He has already covered all of eternity.
Choose to live with the consequences but don’t carry the consequences on your shoulders, because by carrying the weight and walking in our hurt we are surrendering ourselves to the torture of that pain.
In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”
As great as the forgiveness is that Jesus has given us, he has also given our offenders.
We have got to be humbled enough to see that we are in need of forgiveness
The image of who you are that you’ve built up, or the persona that you’ve cultivated so carefully piecing together is not the end all be all truth of who you are. When you feel distant, or dirty or undeserving. He has forgiven you.
If He can love us THIS much: to forgive our insane debt and rise from the dead in victory, then how dare we reject that forgiveness
Matthew 18:19-20 NIV
“Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”
This is why we choose to live with the consequences of someone else’s sin.
This is why we confront forgiveness when it’s hard.
This is why we don’t forget and we celebrate victories.
Because Jesus placed power on the unity of our relationships.
I will work to confront my unforgiveness and choose to live with the consequences of someone else’s sin.
I will pray about where I need to repent and ask others around me for forgiveness.
I will pray for the unity of our church.
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