Duet. 15:1-11 Matt. 6:12 – And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
I am so glad that my parents taught us, “If you don’t have the money in the bank, you cannot buy what you are looking at”. In this day of credit cards, it’s easy to get deep into debt, and the interest rate can make our debt become a mountain of a problem. If we get into that kind of trouble, we may need to visit a credit counselor to help us plan a way out.
The Law of Moses, God commanded the Israelites to cancel debts at the end of every seven years. The historical record of Israel does not show much if any compliance to this law. The cancellation of debts was intended to be a merciful feature of the Law of Moses. It called for an openhanded, generous attitude toward the poor and a balance of social equality among the nation. Stinginess and lack of concern was inconsistent with the heart of the Law, which, as Jesus said, was based on loving God and caring about your neighbor as much as you care about yourself (see Matthew 22:37-40).
Canceling debts on a society-wide level was to be echoed by a forgiving attitude. The apostle Paul expresses this beautifully when he says in Ephesians 4:32: “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
Imagine if sin was like getting into debt. If you were a slave to some particular sin, it would be like digging yourself into a hole, deeper and deeper, making it harder and harder to climb out. To indulge yourself in that sin would be disaster, but if we cry out to God for the forgiveness of our debts and seek his strength to live an obedient life, we would be free!
Lord, thank you for your kindness and love to us sinners. Forgive us and teach us to be like Jesus, loving and forgiving toward others. In Jesus name, Amen