The Red-Letter Words of Yeshua ~ Part 86

Yeshua’s Preparation of the Emissaries for the End ~ Part 8

In our last post, we examined Works Done in Yeshua’s Name and other topics. This post looks at Kefa’s Question on Forgiveness and concludes this topical study with the Parable of the Servants in Debt.

Kefa’s Question on Forgiveness

21 Then Kefa came up and said to him, “Rabbi, how often can my brother sin against me, and I have to forgive him? As many as seven times?” 22 “No, not seven times,” answered Yeshua, “but seventy times seven! [1]  If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. Also, if seven times in one day he sins against you, and seven times he comes to you and says, ‘I repent,’ you are to forgive him.” [2]

A generous offer is as many as seven times but not enough for Yeshua. In the passage from Luke, Yeshua suggests unlimited forgiveness by using the number seven, which often represents totality or completeness. Seventy times seven represents an unlimited amount. Yeshua tells Kefa and the rest of His talmidim that they should forgive continuously and without limit, just as God forgives them. The lavish nature of divine forgiveness requires the same response in human relationships – the point of Yeshua’s parable in Mattityahu 18:23–35.

Aren’t you glad that God offers us unlimited opportunities to repent and seek forgiveness?

Parable of the Servants in Debt

23 Because of this (referring to Yeshua’s teaching above), the Kingdom of Heaven may be compared with a king who decided to settle accounts with his deputies. 24 Right away, they brought forward a man who owed him many millions; 25 and since he couldn’t pay, his master ordered that he, his wife, his children, and all his possessions be sold to pay the debt. 26 But the servant fell down before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 So, out of pity for him, the master let him go and forgave the debt. 28 “But as that servant was leaving, he came upon one of his fellow servants who owed him some tiny sum. He grabbed him and began to choke him, crying, ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ 29 His fellow servant fell before him and begged, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’ 30 But he refused; instead, he had him thrown in jail until he should repay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were extremely distressed, and they went and told their master everything that had taken place. 32 Then the master summoned his servant and said, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt just because you begged me to do it. 33 Shouldn’t you have had pity on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?’ 34 And in anger, his master turned him over to the jailers for punishment until he paid back everything he owed. 35 This is how my heavenly Father will treat you unless you each forgive your brother from your hearts.” [3]

Many millions, literally, “ten thousand talents.” In Roman times one talent equaled 6,000 denarii, a denarius being roughly a day’s wages for a common laborer. If a day’s wages today are $100, 10,000 talents would be $6 billion! Most fast-food establishments pay more than that in a day.

In our next post, we concluded our series on Yeshua’s Preparation of the Emissaries for the End. In our next post, we follow Yeshua into Yerushalayim for Sukkot (the fall Feast of Tabernacles).

Click here for the PDF version.

[1] Mattityahu 18:21-22.
[2] Luke 17:3b–4.
[3] Mattityahu 18:23–35.

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