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Redeeming the Time - Part 3

FORGIVING SAINTS            Page 2
V.21 (Cont'd.)

** After hearing about how his brothers in Christ can get caught up in sin, what question does Peter ask of Jesus?

"Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?"

** Peter is trying to please the Lord with his magnanimous effort to forgive. From where do you suppose he got the number "seven"?

Jewish tradition of the day and the teaching of the Rabbi's was that you are obligated to forgive someone three times, if they continue to sin against you. But, should it happen a forth time, you do not have to forgive. Peter was taking the standard of the day and doubling it, and then even adding one more. Surely the Lord would be pleased!

V.22 ** How does Jesus respond to Peter's offer?

"I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven."

** Knowing that Jesus brought in the era of "grace and truth" (John 1:17), is He here setting up a system of legalism as to how many times we are to forgive?

Absolutely not! "He simply picked up on Peter's number and multiplied it by itself and then by ten, indicating a number that, for all practical purposes, was beyond counting".
[John Mac Arthur]

Christians are not to be involved in record keeping when it comes to an offense against them, but instead they are to freely forgive. cf. Matthew 6:12

V.23 ** To illustrate His point, Jesus tells a parable about a "certain" king. What did that king want to do?

"...who wished to settle accounts with his slaves"

** Because this parable is to be a comparison with "the kingdom of heaven", who does the king represent?

God, Almighty!

** What does Jesus mean by the king settling accounts?

Kings would regularly bring their subjects before them to have them pay what they owed, not at all unlike our income tax of today.

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