Friday, 24 April 2015

God delivers the unforgiving to tormentors?


I was asked during the week for my opinion on Matthew 18:15-35 and specifically on verse 35.

I am humbled to do so by the revelation obtained from Father God as I sat with Him being taught by the Latter Rain Himself!

Before we deal with this scripture in depth, let me just say that this part and this parable of Jesus (on the unfaithful servant) in particular, is not taught on by many Grace teachers (I have yet to come across one). It is my opinion that all Grace teachers should teach on this, and you'll see why ...

Matthew 18:35 is the conclusion of a long discussion that culminated in a parable told by Jesus and concluded with this particular verse. Verse 35 says:
So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.
These are red-letter words and thus from the Master Himself. Yet, we have to look at the context. What was Jesus concluding on?

Jesus and His disciples were in Capernaum (place of comfort), having just paid tribute (from the mouth of a fish) to the tax collectors. The disciples then wanted to know from Him who is the greatest in the Kingdom ... AND RIGHT THERE JESUS GIVES THE CONTEXT OF WHAT IS TO FOLLOW LATER ON:
"And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,
And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.
But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!" Mat 18:2-7
It goes on. The parable of the unfaithful servant is preempted by the parable of the one lost sheep, showing the very heart of God and the extremes that He goes to in order to find one lost sheep. Jesus turns to his disciples then, emphasizing that "it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish." He explains how that when someone trespasses against us, we should likewise use what is to our disposal (Grace) to reconcile even binding the forces that makes the other party to be at fault with you and loosening what is necessary to bring God's Grace and peace (Gospel).

Enters Peter. 

Peter approaches Jesus to inquire how often one should forgive [aphiēmia brother who sinned against him. Jesus gives the perfect answer from a Grace point of view: ALWAYS and ALL-THE-WAYS "I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven." ... like a child ...

What is forgiveness [aphiēmi]?

Forgiveness is Grace! It is: to not hold to the account to anyone his wrongdoing, to lay aside, leave be, let (alone, be, go, have), omit, put (send) away ... sin (offence).

Now follows the parable in question:

Jesus explains how a certain king, looking at his servant's accounts, was moved by compassion, acquitting [aphiēmi] the servant of all his debt - Absolute grace.

The servant, being a leader himself, in turn does not extent the same courtesy of grace towards his fellow servant who was in debt with him. He even went to the extent to bound (imprison) him because of his debt in contrast with the great grace extended to him by the king.

When the king discovers the conduct of his servant, he is appalled and delivered the very servant to be tormented. You see, the master and the servant is not joint together in Grace (by choice of the servant): "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." Mat 18:20 

Also, the Grace of God extends beyond the number of times man may show grace. The grace that man (the servant) should display to others is not his own works of dos and don'ts, but the Grace of his Master instead.

So, Jesus says:
"And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.
So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses." Mat 18:34-35 
Looking at what Jesus says from the key context verse 7: "Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!" Mat 18:7 we should be keen to understand that Jesus is saying that whosoever causes sin (offence) to come upon these righteous children of Him ... woe onto him! (Look here to understand the Woe-message).

Our New Testament understanding of sin, the offence [skandalon: the movable stick or trigger or trap, snare, entrapment] should be what Jesus said in John 16:8-9. There is only one sin: 
"And when he [the Holy Spirit] is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 
Of sin, because they believe not on me;" Joh 16:8 
In light of Verse 7 we must be clear on this:

  • Offence is also brought when we deny the message of God's perfect Grace!
  • Offence is also brought when we mix the message of God's perfect Grace with the law!
  • Offence is also brought when we remind God's perfect righteous children of their sins and transgressions (that's the work of the devil)! 

In fact, the whole of this concluding parable in Matthew 18 is advice for those not receiving and apposed to God's Grace, Jesus, and against anyone causing God's innocent children, who believe in Him, not to believe in Jesus (God's Grace)  - this is the sin that Jesus talks about in John 16:8-9. The false doctrine against the Grace of God, Jesus Himself.

A person is thus bound or loosed in earth (and accordingly in heaven as a result) should that person deny Jesus. However, should believers agree in the Name of Jesus (receive and agree to His Grace), it will be done by Father God.

So, Jesus makes it easy. The only sin (offence) is refusing Jesus, demonstrated here by the servant who tramples the Free Gift (Jesus) underfoot - the one who witnessed the King extend Grace, but does not forgive his brother his trespasses. This act in essence denies Grace (Jesus) by not also freely displaying Grace (forgiving) as The King did. 

In this parable offence (sin) is demonstrated and provoked by the servant who does not show Grace but instead, demands works and repayment from the one in debt with him to come into right-standing with him. In other words: The Word of Grace being perverted and denied deliberately towards others. Jesus says this choice of ours will cause the Father to withdraw His Hand: Jesus - our very Gift of Grace, our Protection, our Salvation, our Comfort, our Peace, our Provision, our Being. 

What is the result hereof? The enemy will do as he pleases to torment him who exercised his free choice not to receive Jesus ...
"Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?Heb 10:29 
The is only one sin ...

Jesus was very serious about this. He even said:
"And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.Mar 9:42
Forgiveness is a Jesus matter. It is a Grace matter. It a simple action of forgetting and not holding against ... as simple as a child does

It is also a weightier matter when it comes to the servants (preachers) of the King preaching His Word, to openly show forgiveness (Grace) ... teaching that all sins had been forgiven, once and for all!

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