DN Forgiving as You Are Forgiven 3/28/2007
- From: Peter G. Chase <pchase@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2007 00:02:19 -0400
Forgiving as You Are Forgiven
"Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. . .
. For if you forgive men for their transgressions, your heavenly
Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men,
then your Father will not forgive your transgressions" (Matt.
It's possible to confess your sins and still not know the joy of
forgiveness. How? Failure to forgive others! Christian educator J.
Oswald Sanders observed that Jesus measures us by the yardstick we
use on others. He didn't say, "Forgive us because we forgive others,"
but "Forgive us even as we have forgiven others."
An unforgiving Christian is a contradiction in terms because we are
the forgiven ones! Ephesians 4:32 says, "Be kind to one another,
tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has
forgiven you." God forgave us an immeasurable debt, saving us from
the horrors of eternal hell. That should be motivation enough to
forgive any offense against us, yet some Christians still hold
Here are three practical steps to dealing with the sin of
unforgiveness. First, confess it and ask the Lord to help you mend
the relationship in question. Second, go to the person, ask for
forgiveness, and seek reconciliation. You might discover that he or
she wasn't even aware of the offense. Third, give the person
something you highly value. This is a very practical approach based
on our Lord's teaching that where your treasure is, there your heart
will be also (Matt. 6:21). Whenever I've given a book or other gift
to someone who has wronged me, I've felt a great sense of liberty in
my spirit. In addition, my joy is compounded because I feel the joy
of giving as well as the joy of forgiving.
Don't ever let a grudge stand between you and another person. It will
rob you of the full joy of God's forgiveness.
Suggestions for Prayer:
Before praying, examine your heart. If you harbor bitterness toward
another person, follow the procedure given above. Then pray, thanking
the Lord for the joy of reconciliation.
For Further Study:
Read the parable of the servant in Matthew 18:21-35.
What question prompted the parable? How did the king respond to
his servant's pleading? What did the servant do later on? Why
was that wrong?
Drawing Near, Copyright c 1993 John F. MacArthur, Jr.
All rights reserved. Used by permission.
Matthew 6:21 (NKJV)
21 "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
21 Then Peter came to Him and said, "Lord, how often shall my
brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?"
22 Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you, up to seven times, but
up to seventy times seven.
23 "Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who
wanted to settle accounts with his servants.
24 "And when he had begun to settle accounts, one was brought to him
who owed him ten thousand talents.
25 "But as he was not able to pay, his master commanded that he be
sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and that
payment be made.
26 "The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, 'Master,
have patience with me, and I will pay you all.'
27 "Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion,
released him, and forgave him the debt.
28 "But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants
who owed him a hundred denarii; and he laid hands on him and took him
by the throat, saying, 'Pay me what you owe!'
29 "So his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him,
saying, 'Have patience with me, and I will pay you all.'
30 "And he would not, but went and threw him into prison till he
should pay the debt.
31 "So when his fellow servants saw what had been done, they were
very grieved, and came and told their master all that had been done.
32 "Then his master, after he had called him, said to him, 'You
wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me.
33 'Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant,
just as I had pity on you?'
34 "And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers
until he should pay all that was due to him.
35 "So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from
his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses."
These devotions are posted with permission from John MacArthur's
first (1993) devotional work, _Drawing Near_, and they are also sent
out daily for free to several folks via e-mail.
In addition, John's second (1997) devotional, _Strength for Today_,
is also available free via e-mail only. _Strength for Today_ follows
the same format as what you have seen here from _Drawing Near_, but
with different monthly themes.
If you would like to receive daily devotions via e-mail from either
of these series, just let me know (via e-mail), and I will gladly add
you to the list(s) of your choice.
You can hear John MacArthur daily via the Internet by visiting:
You may email John MacArthur in care of Grace to You at:
NOTE for those of you reading via newsgroups: If you wish to reach
me, please contact me via e-mail for quickest results.
Peter G. Chase :: Columbus, Ohio, USA
STOP! Who do you think Jesus is?
There is a living God. He has spoken in His word. He means just what he says, and will do all that He has promised. - Hudson Taylor
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