Jesus gave many parables throughout the life of His ministry. They help us to gain a deeper perspective and understanding of God’s character. They teach many valuable lessons and give us many things to ponder on. In the parable of the unforgiving servant, Jesus teaches us quite a few things about the dangers of unforgiveness.
In this post, I’ll share four lessons from this parable with you.
All scriptures are taken from the NKJV unless otherwise noted.
The Parable Of The Unforgiving Servant
“Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”
Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. And when he had begun to settle accounts, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. But as he was not able to pay, his master commanded that he be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and that payment be made. The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, ‘Master, have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion, released him, and forgave him the debt.
“But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii; and he laid hands on him and took him by the throat, saying, ‘Pay me what you owe!’ So his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ And he would not, but went and threw him into prison till he should pay the debt. So when his fellow servants saw what had been done, they were very grieved, and came and told their master all that had been done. Then his master, after he had called him, said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me. Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?’ And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him.
“So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses.”
– Matthew 18:21-35
Unforgiveness Is Wickedness
Jesus teaches that unforgiveness is wickedness because the master punishes the servant who was unwilling to forgive the debt owed to him. If unforgiveness is righteous, there would be no punishment for it. The Bible teaches that if you know the right thing to do, yet choose to not do it, that’s sin (James 4:17).
Therefore, be sure to forgive all those who have sinned against God and hurt you in the process. If you need help, check out my post 3 Steps To Forgiving Someone.
Unforgiveness Angers God
Since this parable is about God and our sin, we see that God gets angry when we refuse to extend forgiveness unto others. When the master saw the servant was unwilling to forgive, the master got angry and then punished him. In the very next sentence, Jesus explains that His Father will do the same if we do not forgive.
Are you struggling with unforgiveness? If you’re not sure, there’s a list of symptoms of unforgiveness here.
The Punishment Is To Be Given Over To The Torturers
This parable also teaches us that God will hand us over to His enemies to be tortured. Unforgiveness causes torture to manifest in our lives. You can use spiritual warfare all you want, but if God is causing the demonic attack upon you then you need to deal with the cause.
“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.”
– Mark 11:25
That’s why God’s Word tells us very clearly to not hesitate in forgiving our fellow humans. I understand that it’s no easy task, but following the Lord isn’t easy. Jesus tells His disciples to pick up their cross if they want to follow Him. In Matthew chapter 10, He explains that we will be persecuted for our faith in Him.
I’ve found that an easy way to forgive someone is to understand that all sin is against God. Whenever someone does something wrong, they’re not sinning against you. There sinning against God. You just happened to get in the way of their sins. Not only that, but God is a very just God and promises that vengeance belongs to Him. (Romans 12:19)
If you trust and cling to God, you’ll be able to forgive. No one’s sins should be stronger than your love in God. Unforgiveness is not worth skipping out of God’s best and heaven.
Our Punishment For Unforgiveness Will Be Unbearable
God sent His only begotten Son in order for us to believe in Him, repent, be born again, and spend eternity with Him. He’s forgiven all of humankind and it’s up to each one of us to accept that forgiveness. However, if Jesus forgives us of our sins and we refuse to forgive the humans who sin against us then we forfeit our forgiveness.
How can one understand all that God’s forgiven us for that we don’t deserve and not extend that compassion and forgiveness to those we live on earth with? If we forfeit our forgiveness from God, then we no longer have a way to heaven. Jesus says no one can go to the Father except by through Him. (John 14:6) Jesus is the door. Without forgiveness, the door is closed.
If you truly love God, the punishment for unforgiveness will be unbearable. The punishment for those cast into hell is an eternity without the presence of the Father.
The parable of the unforgiving servant teaches us a few things. Those include:
- Unforgiveness is wickedness
- Unforgiveness angers God
- The punishment for unforgiveness is to be handed over to the torturers
- The punishment for unforgiveness will be unbearable
Do you know any other great lessons from this parable that I missed? Please share them below.
I pray you found this article helpful. If so, please share this content. As always, thanks for reading!
Found your Ministry through searching for Seek.
Great perspective on Unforgiveness standing on God’s Word
Ariel, This article was so helpful. I can hear your heart to help people have a closer walk with Jesus in your writing. God Bless You.