Jesus illustrates a principle of the kingdom; that of mercy. In Matthew 18:23-35, He tells the parable of the servant that was deeply in debt to a king. “And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. So, the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt.” That is mercy!
Sadly, the servant turns around and goes after a fellow servant and “seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.” After being shown mercy by his master, you would think this first servant would be overwhelmed by the master’s kindness.
Mercy and forgiveness are both principles on which the kingdom operates. Anyone who is part of the kingdom is expected to show the same quality to those they have relations with. If we are unwilling to demonstrate the same mercy and forgiveness to others as has been shown to us, we will receive the consequences of a hard heart. This is a “heart” issue. Mercy and forgiveness are characteristics of God’s heart toward us, and with the Spirit, we are to show the same to others.
The “heavenly Father” is watching how we use this principle of freedom on others who are indebted to us. Others may never know God’s heart unless they see it beating in you.
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