There is the way God wants us to treat others. God wants us to treat other people who come in contact with us and those we come in contact with in a certain way.
There are times when we remember what people did to us in the past and we feel like paying the person back with revenge. When we remember our past betrayals, hurts and what some people did to us in the past, we feel like it is good to pay them the same way.
It may sound okay but this is not the way God wants His children to treat others who hurt them. The gospel of Matthew 18:21-35, reveals how we are to forgive people who offend us. Essentially it also teaches us how we are to treat our fellow human beings.
In the gospel, Peter goes up to Jesus to ask Him how often He is to forgive His brother. Hence, He proposes whether it could be seven times. Because of the number seven which signifies completion. But Jesus says it is not seven but seventy-seven times.
To explain more about this Jesus tells the story of a King who settles His account with his servants but when the day of reckoning came, they brought to him a man who is owing to the king up to ten thousand talents but he had no means to pay what he is owing.
The king commanded them to sell him and his family. The man pleaded to be given more time to pay because he had nothing. The master pitied his condition and cancelled all his debts. But when this servant met another servant who was him, he treated him badly and locked him up inside the prison. When the master heard about this, he became very angry and punished the servant.
The master was very angry because he forgave him and cancelled all his debt but the servant could not do the same to others. He showed him kindness but he decided to show others wickedness. Then Jesus says “this is how my heavenly Father will deal with us when we refuse to forgive others from the heart.
The Way God expects Us to treat Others.
In this gospel, we have to notify a few points. Jesus tells us through this gospel that what we owe God is much more than whatever anyone is owing to us. Our sins are much heavier than whatever hurts people done to us. But despite our sinfulness, unworthiness, lack of time for God, yet He loves us, cares for us and protects us. God wants us to treat others the way He treats us. This is a summary of today’s reading.
If God loves You.
1.If God shows you kindness then show others too. If God cares for you, also remember to care for others. Also if He has been protecting, nurturing, and saving you, remember to do the same to others. If God has given you free air, natural resources etc, remember not to withhold your hands when you want to help others. Treat others well because God has treated you well.
2.Love others without limits because God loves you without limits. Forgive others from the heart because God forgives you from the heart. Care for people around you the way God has been caring for you.
3. This parable shows that how we treat others may be the way God is going to treat us at the end of our lives. If you can go to God and ask for forgiveness a hundred times and He forgives, then when someone comes to you and asks the same, always forgive. We do not do it for the sake of anyone but for the sake of God we worship. On the last day, it may serve as the standard for our judgement.
4.If couples, families, communities, states, countries, friends etc will abide by this, there will be change, there will be peace, there will be progress. Imagine a place where everyone loves and tolerates the way God does to us. Then that place can be heaven. We can create our heaven if we want. The only problem is that we decide to live in hatred, jealousy and wickedness rather than peace, forgiveness, love and unity.
The Bible verses below will help reveal to us the way to treat others or the way God wants us to treat others. The bible says:
Always remain kind to one another, be tenderhearted, and forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you (Ephesians 4:32).
“This is the commandment that I give you, that you love one another as I have loved you. ( John 15:12).
“If anyone says, “I love God,” but hates his brother, he is nothing but a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he always sees cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever says he loves God must also love his brother the same way. 1 John 4:20-21.
Today, let us resolve to forgive from the heart and treat others well.
May God help us to follow His word and forgive us in any way we have sinned against Him.