SOUNDING A CALL TO SALVATION, SOBRIETY, WATCHFULNESS, FIDELITY AND BROTHERLINESS IN VIEW OF OUR LORD'S RETURN
 
Menu
 Home
 Webmaster

The Lordís Prayer

Teach us to pray; an example to follow.


The curious musings of ...
The sermon notes of an unworthy servant of God.

B. Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
    Matt. 6:9-13 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
    We are under the heading of: III. Third part, For the Benefit of the People of God.
    What do the people of God really need of all that God can provide? The people of God need to be able to enter into the kingdom of God (referred to in the Lordís prayer; and to Nicodemus twice). The items listed are needed for the people of God to follow the path that God has laid before them. They presume the true nature of the flesh, the deceitfulness of sin, and the power of temptation.
    Give us this day our daily bread, forgive us as we forgive, lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil; all of these are not for the benefit of the flesh, they exist because of the flesh, but they address the Spiritual needs of the people of God.

    The son of man is teaching the people of God to ask in this manner; Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.

  1. Forgive us, as we forgive.
  2.     What is being asked for? Forgiveness based on a willingness to forgive. Note, in this passage, the only condition to forgiveness is that the person asking is forgiving others. And this is important, very important.
        Note: that this request is for the Spiritual benefit of mankind and not for the flesh.
        Strange that people expect God to help them, when they will not help others, expect God to bless them when they are not a blessing to others, expect God to forgive them when they will not forgive others. Maybe what is strange, is that God works differently than people expect.

        Matt. 6:14-15 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: 15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
        It is fitting that the verses that follow the Lordís Prayer are these. You must forgive to be forgiven. Thereby adding an emphasis that no other phrase in the Lordís prayer has.

        Forgive = 863 aphiemi {af-ee'-ay-mee} Meaning: 1) to send away 1a) to bid going away or depart 1a1) of a husband divorcing his wife 1b) to send forth, yield up, to expire 1c) to let go, let alone, let be 1c1) to disregard 1c2) to leave, not to discuss now, (a topic) 1c21) of teachers, writers and speakers 1c3) to omit, neglect 1d) to let go, give up a debt, forgive, to remit 1e) to give up, keep no longer 2) to permit, allow, not to hinder, to give up a thing to a person 3) to leave, go way from one 3a) in order to go to another place 3b) to depart from any one 3c) to depart from one and leave him to himself so that all mutual claims are abandoned 3d) to desert wrongfully 3e) to go away leaving something behind 3f) to leave one by not taking him as a companion 3g) to leave on dying, leave behind one 3h) to leave so that what is left may remain, leave remaining 3i) abandon, leave destitute Origin: from 575 and hiemi (to send, an intens. form of eimi, to go); TDNT - 1:509,88; v Usage: AV - leave 52, forgive 47, suffer 14, let 8, forsake 6, let alone 6, misc 13; 146

    1. What is forgiveness?
    2.     Note that the Greek word is translated as leave, more than it is translated as forgive. Five of the first six uses of the word simply mean leave. A wonderful way to view forgiveness. Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is heaven, give us this day our daily bread, and let our debts leave as we let the debts of others leave them, ...
          Debt can be a painful reminder of our faults, our weakness, and our lack of self-control. It would be a relief, joy, and peace if our debts would leave. Debt could also be substituted with sin, and the sentence still makes sense, and is scripturally valid since all have sinned.

          Matt. 4:10-11 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. 11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
          Jesus told satan to go away (get thee hence), and satan left (863 = leave). A wonderfully simple explanation of forgiveness. Consider, when something is forgiven it leaves; the guilt, the shame, and the associated penalty leave also. Sadly it can reappear depending on us, if only in our doubts and insecurities.

          Matt. 4:19-22 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. 20 And they straightway left their nets, and followed him. 21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them. 22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
          We recently read these same verses with regard to will; come, go, follow; all are associated with the exercise of freewill. This time we look at these verses for the word left (853 = leave), the disciples, and by extension the people of God, leave the world behind to follow after God, a necessary step in the service of God.

    3. Because all are in need of forgiveness.
    4.     Matthew 9:1-8 And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city. 2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee. 3 And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth. 4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts? 5 For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk? 6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house. 7 And he arose, and departed to his house. 8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.
          Jesus has power to forgive sins. And which is easier, the power to forgive sins or to heal; but that ye may know ... the scribes could not believe what they could not see. Only believing what is comprehended by the flesh means that the people of God will never grow into the Spiritual people that God wants them to be.
          Jesus said, 'Son, be of good cheer' thy sins have left thee. This passage clearly states that it is sin being forgiven. Is this important? Oh yeah.

        * And all have sinned.
            Rom. 3:9-12 What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; 10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. 12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
            All that have ever lived are sinful. Remember that the standard is set by God, by the righteousness of God; mankind does not meet this standard apart from Jesus Christ.
            Mankind is only good in their own eyes as they compare themselves to themselves, and the worst of them is the standard of mankind. Therefore mankind has developed a morality that is based on depravity, being only a few steps above depravity; because they look down instead of up for the standard of morality/good/righteousness. Look to God, consider the standard set by God, the righteousness of God. It is then that a person understands that all are under sin, Jew and Gentile.

            Rom. 3:21-23 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
            The meaning is clear. The only question here is; will the hearers believe what is written? Do we understand our nature, do we accept the responsibility for our actions, or are all our problems the fault of something, or someone else?

            Gal. 3:22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
            One more reference to emphasize the point.
            All are under sin, it does not matter who you are. That means that our thoughts, those desires that come from the heart, and the actions that follow, are not good, pure, or sinless. These things come from a corrupted being that needs to acknowledge what it is, what is inside of it, and what motivates the actions that are taken.

            Please understand, every person that has ever lived needs forgiveness, except for Jesus.

  3. What is debt, and a debtor?
  4.     Matt. 6:9-15 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. 14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: 15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
        Debt, debtor, is a person that owes something to somebody else, an obligation that must be paid. This is exactly how the word is used in the New Testament, several references could be cited. But, ...
          ... the Lordís prayer states that there is a debt that is owed to God.

          Debt = 3783 opheilema {of-i'-lay-mah} Meaning: 1) that which is owed 1a) that which is justly or legally due, a debt 2) metaph. offence, sin Origin: from (the alternate of) 3784; TDNT - 5:565,746; n n Usage: AV - debt 2; 2

          Debtor = 3781 opheiletes {of-i-let'-ace} Meaning: 1) one who owes another, a debtor 1a) one held by some obligation, bound by some duty 1b) one who has not yet made amends to whom he has injured: 1b1) one who owes God penalty or whom God can demand punishment as something due, i.e. a sinner Origin: from 3784; TDNT - 5:565,746; n m Usage: AV - debtor 5, sinner 1, which owed 1; 7

        Luke 13:1-5 There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners (268) above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? 3 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners (3781) above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
        This is a very interesting addition to the thought under consideration. Debt is equated with sin in this passage. So, debt can equal sin, as mentioned earlier in this section.
        What is the standard for sin and at what point does God act? That seems to be the unspoken question that Jesus is addressing. What people might not understand is that all of mankind is sinful, and, as Jesus states, that if they do not repent bad things could happen to them.

        Are the people of God sinful? Seems like a question that does not need to be asked, but it does need to be asked. The author has heard, that there are some that teach that the saved cannot sin. (Hmm. should not and cannot are many degrees of separation apart). And there are unsaved people that do not believe that they are sinners. But yes; the people of God can sin and are sinning. As long as the body of flesh is not in subjection, sin runs wild; even with the body in subjection mankind can still sin (1Corinthians 9:27-).

        *Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
        Romans 8:1-14 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: 4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. 9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. 10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. 12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. 13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
        Will try to give some context to this this verse (Romans 8:12).
        Romans 8:1-14 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: 4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. ...
        Note the plain statement in the first verse, there is therefore no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
        Are the all of us, walking without sin? Is our body, mind, and spirit in complete submission to Christ? The truth is, the people of God have a history of sin that is thousands of years long, from Genesis to Malachi. Why be surprised at this long history of sin, it is the natural condition of the flesh.
        Walking after, 2596 = according to, down from, ... the Spirit, does not mean that we have been glorified and are now a new creation that is made alive by the Spirit, a spiritual being.
        ... 5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. ...
        They that are of the flesh, ... think about the influence of the flesh in our lives. Food and raiment, work and sleep, children and the rest of the family, sickness and toothaches, house and transportation; it is not easy to get Ďout of the fleshí. Nonetheless it is what God wants of His children.
        The people of God are living in the flesh and have to deal with all that is associated with flesh daily.
        ... 9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. 10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. ...
        It is the plan of God that His people live in the Spirit and not in the flesh, and it is to this end that people of God should be striving; learning, learning, to subdue the flesh to the Spirit of God. If we have the Spirit of God the body is dead because of sin; note this, the body is still dead in sin at this time, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness, specifically the righteousness of God. Walking in the spirit is walking in life and righteousness, but the body of flesh is still a creature of sin.

        Is it possible to walk on two different pathways simultaneously, or to live two diametrically opposed lives concurrently? You cannot serve God and mammon.
        In Hebrews 5:6-8 it is said of Jesus, though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience through the things that He suffered. Are we better than Jesus? Are we perfected without suffering? Ahem, speaking of an entitled generation, look in the mirror.
        Have you heard of the great cloud of witnesses? The first verse of Hebrews 12, referring to the faithful of the eleventh chapter, it tells us to lay aside every weight, and the sin that does so easily beset us, and run with patience the race that is set before us. The cloud of witnesses have run this race, and through the power of God they have over come the flesh.
        The cloud of witnesses is a reminder that if the Spirit of God, that raised Jesus from the dead, dwell in you, the Spirit of God will make alive your bodies.
        ... 12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. 13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
        Note the blessed promises of God, note the effect of the Spirit of God on the deeds of the body. There is victory over the sinful nature of the flesh through the Spirit of God, and that victory is eternal life.
        Consequently, we are debtors to God (Spirit, Spirit of God, Spirit of Christ, Christ, Spirit, God; are all terms used in these scriptures). Be very clear, we are not debtors to the flesh.
        Being led of the Spirit of God is to be fighting the daily battle against sin in the flesh. Putting the things of God first, and surrendering ourselves to Him.

        If the people of God cannot sin, why is this written. Note the conditional clause; if ye through the Spirit put to death (mortify) the deeds of the body. There is no need to put to death the deeds of a body that is beyond sin. Those that are led of the Spirit are the sons of God, Ďledí indicates that while they are sinners, they are the sons of God.
        Almost hate to say it, but there is a conditional clause attached to life in verse thirteen. Put to death the deeds (mortify) of the body, this is that walk of faith, i.e. faithfulness, a daily relationship with the Father and the Son.

    1. A parable about debt, and forgiveness.
    2.     It is wonderful to find an example so relevant to the discussion. What if the certain king is God, and the person standing before Him is one of us, maybe you, or maybe me. Note that how we are treated is related to the manner in which we treat others.
          Matt. 18:23-35 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants. 24 And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed (3781) him ten thousand talents. 25 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. 27 Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. 28 But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed (3784) him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest (3784). 29 And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. 30 And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. 31 So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done. 32 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: 33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? 34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. 35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.
          I love this comparison, ten thousand talents verses a hundred pence. An aged comparison for this (copyright 1930), but it is ten or twelve million dollars verses 20 dollars, a number that has increased dramatically over the years. The difference is drastic, enormous, bigger than big; so big it is hard to comprehend and to explain.
          The comparison of this enormous disparity is the difference between God forgiving us through Jesus Christ, verses something that a person owes us, or has done wrong to us. What is problematic is that mankind does not comprehend the extent of their natural sin nature, or the depths of their sin. How far removed from God is mankind due to their natural sinful condition, and how quickly can mankind be brought close to God through Jesus Christ; which is an expression of Godís favor.
          Could we say that there is a compelling need to forgive, if we want to be forgiven? Actually this is one the many issues that goes beyond our immediate needs; to address our character. What kind of person are we? Are we showing forth the attributes of God?
          Think of the characteristics that set the people of God apart from others, would forgiveness be one of those distinguishing characteristics?

          A few words about this section: It is important that we remember the story of forgive us our debts. It all started with Our Father, the great God that is beyond description, the Holy God, whose coming kingdom the people of God expectantly look for. May the will of God be done. Now the son of man is teaching the people of God, His disciples, to seek out the bread associated with eternal, spiritual life, to ask for forgiveness of sins, and to ask God to deliver them from evil.