January 28

Exodus 5:22-7:25;Matthew 18:21-19:12;Psalm 23:1-6;Proverbs 5:22-23

Many people say that forgiveness is hard. But is it really? Today we read a story about a man who owed a creditor a lot of money. Faced with losing everything and having his entire family sold into slavery, this man pleads with his creditor to have mercy on him.

In a surprising act, the creditor forgives the debt. This man whose debt has been forgiven senses the relief of debt cancellation and starting with a clean slate. Not too long after his debt is forgiven, this man sees someone who owes him a little bit of money. Rather than extending debt forgiveness or at a minimum patience, this man, whose debts were forgiven, gives the harshest treatment possible to his debtor.

When the original creditor hears of this, he is incensed because of the hypocrisy and double standard of this man. He has him arrested and tortured until his debt is paid in full. Why was this man whose debt had been cancelled, so unforgiving?

Simple: he forgot what it felt like to be forgiven! Forgiveness is not hard when you recall how much God has forgiven you. Take a moment and remember how you rebelled against God. Think about the times you were disobedient to God. How many times did you ignore God’s leading? For all these things, you were forgiven! If God can forgive you, shouldn’t you muster the courage to forgive others?

The one who has been forgiven much will forgive much!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Exodus 8:1-9:35; Matthew 19:13-30; Psalm 24:1-10; Proverbs 6:1-5

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