In response to Peter’s magnanimous suggestion that he could forgive 7 times, Jesus tells this parable, only told in Matthew.
“Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold[h] was brought to him. 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. “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ The servant’s master took pity on him, cancelled the debt and let him go. “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. “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’ “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened. “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I cancelled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. (Matthew 18: 23-34)
And for today before going more in depth with the parable I dwell on the next verse: “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.” (v35)
God has given mankind the freedom to choose.
We choose to love which blesses or we choose to sin which hurts.
Today you may be the victim because someone made the wrong choice.
When we are the sinner we cry for mercy. But the natural response when we are sinned against is to cry for justice.
The blood of Abel in Genesis 4 cried for justice. It was a prayer of ‘Get him God.’
The blood of Jesus is not ‘Father get these murderers’ but “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)
What name needs to be mentioned that would cause you to react with? They may have died years ago. The event is not far from you. Is there unforgiveness still there?
Eva Mozes Kor died in July of 2019 as she was once again visiting Poland. She was a survivor of Auschwitz. “Forgive your worst enemies,” Kor said in a video recording of her last visit to the Auschwitz Museum posted to its official Facebook page. “The moment I forgave the Nazis, I felt free from Auschwitz and from all the tragedy that had occurred to me,” she added. Eva and her twin Miriam were cruelly experimented on by the ‘Angel of Death’ Josef Mengele but survived until the liberation of the camp in January of 1945. They lost their parents and two other sisters there. Before she died this year Eva was filmed at the site and she told of how she forgave Mengele:
“After we were set free I went home, closed the door and picked up a dictionary. I wrote all the nasty words I could find from the dictionary and spoke them out clear and loud. I then said “In spite of all that I forgive you.” I found that as a little victim I had power over the Angel of Death and I wasn’t hurting anybody. I had an interesting thought that he could never change my forgiving him. I am in charge of it. It was a very powerful feeling. If I can forgive him I can forgive anyone who ever hurt me.”
Who still needs your forgiveness?