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Written by Wally Fry @ https://truthinpalmyra.wordpress.com
Original post @ https://truthinpalmyra.wordpress.com/2016/02/16/great-questions-in-the-bible-lord-how-many-times-shall-i-forgive-my-brother-or-sister-who-sins-against-me-the-parable-of-the-lender-part-1/
Great Questions In the Bible-Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant Part 1
Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
For those who may just be joining, we have been doing a series of devotionals around Matthew Chapter 18 and some of its teachings about forgiveness. Although we have covered quite a bit in the chapter, the above verse has been our center piece or the series more or less. This was the question Peter asked of Jesus during their conversation on forgiveness, and the answers to Peter’s question have been our topic of discussion. Now will move on the Jesus telling a parable about and unforgiving servant.
Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants.And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents. But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest.nd his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done. Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.
Wow, that’s some harsh stuff right there. People put in prison, and delivered to tormentors. To make it worse, this passage is saying God will do likewise to us? Ouch and ouch.
First things first. This passage is NOT about salvation. Got that? Great! Allow me to explain. First and foremost, our salvation is by grace through faith and only by grace. Nothing we do earns it; nothing we do keeps it. So, any who interpret this passage as relating to our salvation and the earning or losing of it, well you are simply wrong.
Next, this passage is addressed to believers. Which really makes it seem harsh, doesn’t it? How can we conclude that this parable is addressed to believers?
First, it was likened to the Kingdom of Heaven. Who is in the Kingdom of Heaven but those who believe? Second, this parable was given to Peter in direct response to the question Peter asked Jesus. Peter asked about “my brother.” Who are our brother’s and sisters? Those who have been saved by God’s grace of course. In conclusion, there is every indication that this passage is aimed at saved believers.
Given the seeming harshness of this passage, what is the ramification of this being written for believers? That is easy. God is very, very serious about us extending forgiveness to our brothers and sisters in Christ.
We could start a list of Bible verses on forgiveness, love, kindness, and other similar words and those passages would fill a book in and of themselves. But here, we see a link between what God requires us to do, and what He says we may suffer if we do not. God is serious, and in this passage He tell us just how serious He really is.
When God tells us to forgive, He means it.
Next: we break down this passage a bit.