#LifeVerse 4: “His master turned 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 from your heart.” Matthew 18:34-35
Scorching scripture! Turned over to torturers if we refuse to forgive others!
Jesus had told the story of a man who owed millions. He could not pay the debt, and begged for mercy. His master forgave him the entire debt, but that man refused to have mercy on one who owed him an almost insignificant debt. The first master found out about his lack of gratitude and his obstinate refusal to forgive, came back to him, had him jailed and tortured “until he should pay back all he owed” – an impossibility because of the magnitude of the debt.
We are the man who has forgiven multiple millions. God has had mercy on us through Jesus. Our debt is forgiven. But now our role is to forgive all those who sin against us – the big debts and the smaller daily annoyance-type debts.
If we refuse to forgive, according to Jesus’ words, we will be turned over to the torturers (Nightmares? Health issues? Demonic assaults?).
But how do we forgive?
Not with our emotions, but with our wills in the name and power of Jesus. “In the name of Jesus, I forgive ___.” We do not even check our emotions to see if we felt like doing or saying those words. We rest in His forgiveness and release those who have sinned against us, however great or small the offenses.
I learned about this scripture when learning how to release/forgive my dad whom I never really knew, and the woman whom he later married, but the message is far deeper than forgiving past grievances. This is a day-by-day release of the insignificant offenses from everyone around us.
I do not care to be turned over to torturers. I intend to keep forgiving!
Forgiveness is a basic ingredient of a life filled with joy and peace.
I heard Guy Cohen from Acco, Israel, the other day. He said, “Don’t invite Jesus into your mind, but into your heart!”
I thought, “Correct. Paul said, ‘With the heart man believes. He did not say, With the mind.” The mind gathers information, but the heart must take the step of faith.