The Duty to Forgive—No Matter How Difficult
welcome to real Christianity my name is Dale Partridge for those of you who are new here you can always find the show notes for these episodes a tree learn.org Sinatra learn.org is to bring the church back to the Bible and we're doing that by fighting for biblical literacy in the church today's episode we're going to be touching on an issue that both at the core of our relationship with God and our relationship with others were going to be talking about forgiveness and every one of us has faced the opportunity to either forgive or resent for those who have chosen the latter that resentment often turns into bitterness retaliation and even sometimes hate before we begin diving into the depths of this conversation just want to make a couple of quick announcement the first thing is we have just passed over three million downloads on the real Christianity podcast
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 okay to dive into this episode I'm not going to pretend that this is a non-issue among Christians fact that you know we've all been hurt betrayed deceived the frauded abandoned by somebody at some point in our lives and the need for a clear understanding of the Bible's position in command of forgiveness is not so much the illogical as it really is practical for our life furthermore I said that the Bible stands firm and speaks very clearly about our duty as Christians to forgive the trespasses in defense of the father's now to be clear art forgiveness doesn't mean that there are not consequences and Justice are both civil and divine for the painful actions of those who have hurt us there's absolutely a place for Retribution in terms of consequences for those
 infliction of pain but today's discussion is regarding the Bible doctrine of forgiveness but not only the act or the duty but also the reason behind it and for those who are severely wounded I just want to encourage you to join me today as we look upon the words of Our Lord this passage is from Matthew 18 23 through 35 it's a 13 verses and it's a parable and so hang in there as a read the text I might be reading from the NTSB and it'll offer some clarification in a few application points at the end it reads for this reason the Kingdom of Heaven may be compared to a King who wished to settle accounts with his slaves
 we had begun to settle them one who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him but since he did not have the means to repay his Lord commanded him to be sold along with his wife and children and all that he had and repayment to be made so the slave fell to the ground and prostrated himself before him saying have patience with me and I'll repay you everything and the Lord of that slave felt compassion and released him and forgave him the debt but the slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii
 and he sees him and began to choke him saying pay back what you owe so his fellow slave fell to the ground began to plead with him saying have patience with me and I will repay you but he was unwilling and went and threw him in prison until he should pay back what was owed so when his fellow slaves saw what had happened they were deeply grieved and came and reported to their lord all that it happened then summoning him his lord said to him you Wicked slave I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me should you not also have mercy on your fellow slave in the same way that I had mercy on you and his Lord moved and his Lord was moved with anger handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed to him
 then Jesus said my heavenly father will also do the same to you if each of you does not forgive his brother from the heart
 now this is again a parable and our job and our duty as interpreters of scripture is to extract the meaning of a parable which as parabolic language and there are some rules for interpreting Parables that are different than interpreting scripture that's more director historical our didactic but as we know that parables are basically simple stories that typically illustrate one moral truth in this Parable Jesus doesn't really leave the listeners much room for interpretation the lesson is pretty clear forgive as you have been forgiven
 and that said I believe the reason it's so many Christians still struggle with forgiveness despite knowing our Lord's position on this matter is because they don't fully understand the reasons behind it and the degree of forgiveness it's been extended to them and this is really important we cannot extend forgiveness that we have not understood or experienced ourself to my aim in this episode is to really look briefly at the parable and extracted some of the theological narrative display by Jesus and breaking down and talk about them a b my first point
 I want you to notice is
 our debt to God is so great it is unable to be repaid it Jesus tells us in this Parable that a man owes 10000 talents that translates to about 3.4 billion dollars in today's money and at the average wage during that day it would have taken about two hundred thousand years to pay off another words like the debt that Jesus is talking about this Parable is so great that it's unable to be paid back and now know the debt we're talking about here is obviously our sin we have a huge debt of sin against God you know what I think about the passage that are that has been nailed to the cross in the sense that Jesus paid for that dead our sin
 and we've sinned so greatly against a holy God that without his forgiveness
 and there is no possible way that we could ever be reconciled to him let's play number one number two is God the king in this Parable is compassionate and willing to forgive even the greatest jettison
 against him and we see this in his willingness to make a path for reconciliation through repentance and belief in Jesus Christ Romans 5:8 says but God demonstrates his own love toward us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us at 1st John 4:9 through 10 in this the love of God was made manifest Among Us that God sent his only son into the world so that we might believe our that we might live through him in this is love not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his son to be the propitiation for our sins that word propitiation means to appease the wrath of God Through Blood Sacrifice it's a Biblical word that's really important we are appeasing the wrath of God Through Blood Sacrifice I should say not we but Christ is doing that until Christ became that sacrificial
 propitiation for our sins paying the debt of our sins Ephesians 2:7 says so that in the coming ages he that is God he might show the immeasurable riches in of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus I don't want to I wish that I could read all of the fusions going to give you the context there but one thing I want to show you is that he basically has elected us and chosen us redeemed us according to Ephesians 2 so that in the coming ages God might show the immeasurable immeasurable Riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus so whenever one our debt to God is so great it's unable to be repaid phone number to is it God is compassionate and willing to forgive even the greatest amount of debt in regards to our sins against him
 so this is what we're learning from this Parable part number three the sins that others committed against us are small in comparison to the sins we commit against the holy God now perspective is vital without a clear comprehension of how repulsive and defensive we are to God in our sin we're not going to be able to comprehend the degree of Grace and forgiveness extended to us through Christ another words we can't offer what we have not experienced ourselves we can't practice what we don't understand we can't extend what we don't have in this is why it's vital that we have a clear view of the doctrine of man when you contrast the doctrine of man are depravity our fallen this our Brokenness our sinfulness with God's holiness we begin to see why Jesus used such an ore
 number in this Parable like ten thousand talents you also begin to see why the sins of others committed against you or me are comparatively microscopic and the ratio of the Jesus uses in the parable right it talks about 10000 talents in 110 are essentially this is microscopic in relationship to one Talent would be one would be 1% of that we're talking about a hundred denarii not even Talent what what I'm basically trying to get across here is it the Grievous Miss of the sins that we commence commit against one another
 are microscopic in comparison to the Grievous nest of the sins that we commit against a holy God and that must sink in deeply into your soul c.s. Lewis says to be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable in others because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you
 I think that was a great way to capture that but what I would even take further is it to be a Christian means to forgive these relatively small issues because God has forgiven these mountainous magnitude giant enormous huge colossal issues in US
 the phone number for is we learn from this Parable which is I think the most vital moral lesson that we get from this I think this is the central meaning of the parable
 our unwillingness to forgive others in light of what we have been forgiving is wicked
 are the parable actually reads quote you Wicked slave I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slaves in the same way that I had mercy on you
 the first let me point out is that it's interesting this Parable isn't teaching
 that we need to forgive people who haven't repented
 now we do know that true reconciliation requires both parties there needs to be repentance for reconciliation to actually take place that said the scriptures also teach strongly against bitterness and hate and forgiveness regardless of repentance Luke 6:27 through 28 says but I say to you who hear love your enemies do good to those who hate you bless those who curse you pray for those who abused you and other words if someone sends against you as a born-again Christian and this person repents to you and you refuse to forgive them
 this is a major deal watch out John Piper says it this way if you are a merciless person you will meet a merciless God and that's really starting to get closer to kind of what Jesus is saying here the gravity the weight of having to disagree of forgiveness and not extending it to others
 so basically in one sense you can't have reconciliation without repentance I'm so it's important an offense that someone's taken against you or someone's offended you or send against you it is important that person repentance and you can have reconciliation between those two parties especially as Brothers and Sisters in Christ now the question really becomes what do we need to forgive somebody if someone doesn't repent
 and I'm going to say yes we do we are called to forgive regardless of their apology
 we've been extended such a great deal of Grace and forgiveness that it should allow us to forgive even the most
 dark and broken sins that are committed against us Piper comes out again for the win when he pointed out Jesus teaches
 you cannot genuinely receive my forgiveness and remain unforgiving
 and again I think that's the central point of what Jesus is teaching In this passage we really need to work on
 receiving the forgiveness and not just receiving it cuz it's already happened to us but actually comprehending the Forgiveness comprehending the magnitude of forgiveness it's from that place that we can extend the Forgiveness so you know if you have bitterness or if you have resentment or Revenge retaliation Or Hate in Your Heart from a wound was inflicted by another
 that needs to be let go in the way that can be let go is through seeing what Christ has done for you and what God has done for you in Christ
 so the question is what is this really mean for your life what do you do with this
 first if
 if you're one who struggles with bitterness I would encourage you to study the doctrine of man
 and in tandem without study the doctrine of total depravity
 the truth is that we think much too highly of ourselves we are blind to how a heinous we are in light of the holy God self-love is blinding and we live in a generation of selfism and self-love and we often think that were much greater in much better than we really are and when we think so highly of ourselves it
 alleviates the ability to I should say doesn't alleviate it it
 doesn't allow us to see
 who we truly are and how much we had to be forgiven and again this is at the core of this issue and when you finally grasped the degree of your own depravity you will cherish God's grace and forgiveness all the more it's here at that space when you have Clarity that you will become humble and that you will be more easily easily be able to extend that Grace and that mercy and that forgiveness that you have received two others another great resource to help you really grow the chasm between God and you so that Christ becomes more beautiful
 is RC sproul's book The Holiness of God when you can comprehend the Holiness of God and the depravity of man and that Gap widens further and further and further until this point where you go I cannot believe that I am forgiven I cannot believe that I am saved oh God why did you choose me that's gross nasty Center
 you think it's a man in the gospels that's pounding his chest oh God have mercy on me a sinner
 when you when you can get to that perspective
 and you realize how much of the debt has been wiped away you will not turn into that servant who holds people accountable and chokes them and ask for payment and
 you know hangs on to the bitterness and resentment and will not forgive others you won't be that person because you can't God love will pierce your heart and extend and pour out of you and grace and mercy and forgiveness
 ignorance of scripture doesn't remove our duty to obey it
 and that is that we are to obey
 this truth even if we don't yet understand it
 attack in some instances by doing we actually learn to understand
 but as it pertains to this passage in pain teaching forgive others even if you can't understand why at this point is you still need to go and you need to do your study the doctrine of man is still need to go look at a property you still need to look at the Holiness of God in the Lord will reveal those things in time and grow that Revelation in your heart and go get more and more beautiful the older you get the more you understand the more you mature in Christ but until that point
 we still need to open a
 to see God's word and seek counsel from other mature Believers in that process but trust the teaching of scripture that forgive as we have been forgiven
 we have to remember that God says that vengeance is his and that he will repay Justice will be served on Earth or an eternity regardless of these matters between us and another
 but until then we need to love and pray for and bless and find peace at least from our end with those that have heard us
 and we have to remember if
 Jesus could forgive and pray for those who were murdering him on the cross father forgive them for they know not what they do Steven said the same thing many Martyrs their church history have said the same thing what they are doing is they're extending the love in the Forgiveness that has been given to them and it's pouring out through them into others
 if people can do that when they see the beauty of God's forgiveness grace and mercy then you can forgive those and pray for those and love those and bless those who have hurt you
 it's a me the grace of God be upon you in this journey of forgetting other people and letting go of the pain and looking to Christ and placing that hurt and that broken is at his feet or he can make you whole
 I hope this message was helpful for you in at a fine for you and your journey of understanding the Bible Understanding Christian Theology and obviously having a better relationship with Jesus Christ
 if you're not a regular listener don't worry about this next part but if you are I'd like to ask you to leave a review you can just tap the stars in the podcast app you don't even need to write anything but if you do write something and you do leave a review I read every single one of them and they have been so encouraging the last thing I wanted to mention is for those that are regular listeners would you consider supporting our work at relearn. Org forward slash donate again just that maybe 5-10 $20 a month all of those things are very helpful for the work that we're trying to do the 2022 year is less than 6 months away from us and if we start fundraising now instead of waiting to the last couple months of the year that allows us to have a better grass for our budget and more stability coming into 2020 to thank you for listening to this episode it's been a blessing to share the scriptural truth with you guys my name is Dale Partridge this is real Christianity and we'll see you next week
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