Today’s Scripture: The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest. And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. Matthew¬†18:26-30

His heart sank deep within his chest as the sentence was given: all he owned-wife, children, and home-would be sold to pay off his debt.

In desperation, he cast himself at the king’s feet and begged for mercy. With tears streaming down his face, he pleaded for more time.

The king lifted the man to his feet and was overcome with compassion. He canceled his debt. He was free. He was forgiven.

But before he shared the good news with his family, he found a servant who owed a small sum of money. Forgetting the king’s kindness, he grabbed the servant, took him by the throat, and demanded he repay his debt. The servant begged him for mercy, but he refused. When the king learned of his servant’s actions, he cast him in prison to repay his debt.

When we won’t forgive our neighbors for their offenses, we’re doing the same thing. Any offense a person commits against us is of no comparison to our offense against Christ. Our sin sent Him to the cross.

Think about it. What has anyone done against you which Christ has not endured? He endured your offenses. In the same manner, show grace towards your neighbor’s offenses. Give them more time. Cancel their debt. Set them free.

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder