Matthew 18


Matthew 18:19

“Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.

(a) My Father; see entry for Matthew 5:16.

(b) It shall be done. The God Jesus revealed is a listening and responsive Father (Matt. 6:8, 7:11, Luke 11:13, John 15:16, 16:23, 26). He hears your prayers and knows your needs even before you ask him (Matt 6:8).


Matthew 18:22

Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.

Up to seventy times seven. Be extravagant with your forgiveness. Forgive as Christ forgave you – without hesitation, reservation, or qualification (Col. 3:13).

Prior to the cross, Jesus preached conditional forgiveness to people living under the old covenant. “If you forgive, God will forgive” (Matt. 6:14, Mark 11:25). However, as the messenger of the new covenant, he also demonstrated and proclaimed unconditional forgiveness (Matt. 9:2, 18:27, Luke 7:42, 47, 11:4, 23:34).


Matthew 18:27

“And the lord of that slave felt compassion and released him and forgave him the debt.

(a) Forgave him the debt. Jesus told this story to show us that God freely forgives us on account of grace and without any regard for our behavior (Eph. 1:7). Jesus died for us while we were sinners, and he forgave us while we were sinners (Col. 2:13). Before you repented, confessed, or did anything, the Lamb of God carried away all your sins – past, present, and future. See entry for Luke 23:34.

(b) Forgave. The God Jesus revealed is a merciful, gracious and forgiving Father (Matt. 6:14, Luke 6:36, 7:47, 15:22, 23:34, John 1:14). See entry for Forgiveness.


Matthew 18:33

‘Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slave, in the same way that I had mercy on you?’

Mercy is one facet of God’s grace (Heb. 4:16). Mercy is how grace appears to the needy.

Just as we are saved by grace (Eph. 2:5), we are saved by mercy (Tit. 3:5). Just as we are forgiven by grace (Eph. 1:7), we are forgiven by mercy (Matt. 18:33, Luke 1:77-78, Heb. 8:12). See entry for Mercy.


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