230. Kingdom parables-10
PARABLE OF THE UNMERCIFUL SERVANT.
"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 talents 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. 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 the servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii ... had the man thrown in prison until he could pay the debt ... 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 turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed." ( Matthew 18:23-34)
The day is coming when 'each of us will give an account of himself to God.' (Romans 14:12) Will our accounts tally? Have we forgiven others just as we were forgiven? Many believers have not understood the gospel 'message of reconciliation' (2 Corinthians 5:18-20) between God and man and between men. They think its optional ( not obligatory) to forgive others and still harbour bitterness. But it is imperative ( of vital importance; crucial) that we 'forgive as the Lord forgave.' ( Colossians 3:13) because it is mandatory (required by mandate; compulsory) for us to forgive others lest we stake our salvation, just as the unmerciful servant found out to his horror! Though once forgiven, he was handed over to the jailers to be tortured because he wouldn't forgive his debtors! Heaven is a sweet place for those who have been forgiven and will forgive others. There is no room for bitter people, who are unwilling to forgive others. Such people will not be raptured, if alive, nor will they partake of the first resurrection, if dead, but will be left in Hades until the 1000 year rule of Christ is over ( Revelation 20:5). Instead, they will be raised up along with the wicked at the second resurrection. Yes! It is wickedness on our part not to forgive others as Christ forgave us. This might come as a surprise to many believers but Jesus himself said, "This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart." (Matthew 18:35) Believers who have received forgiveness from the Lord, therefore, have no other option but to forgive others, whether they feel like it or not, lest they grieve the Holy Spirit. 'Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you have been sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with all form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.' (Ephesians 4:30-32) Jesus had taught his disciples to pray: "Forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors" (Matthew 6:12) because under the old covenant, forgiveness was conditional, meaning, we would not be forgiven unless we forgive others. But under the new testament, we have been unconditionally forgiven. Therefore, we ought to forgive others unconditionally, whether they acknowledge their wrongdoing or not, for we too were once enemies of God when he forgave us. 'God demonstrated his love for us in this: While we were still sinners , Christ died for us ... when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son ...' (Romans 5:8-10) Amen.