For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. – Matthew 6:14-15 ESV
In the great section on Spiritual Warfare, chapter 6 verse 11, that Paul wrote about to the Ephesian church- Paul implores us to ‘Beware of the wiles of the devil’. “Wiles” is about deception through trickery and includes all the methods that would be part of that. It has to do with cunning or skill applied to no good purpose. We must remember there is a battle for your soul, and for God’s glory. A battle between good and evil, between light and darkness, between the lover of our soul and the despiser of our soul! The devils outcome is to steal, kill and destroy, see John 10:10. Jesus came to give us life and have it abundantly. He also states as one of His reasons for coming in the flesh was to battle the devil and his destruction of God’s children. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.- 1 John 3:8 Romans 3:23 tells us that we all fall short of God’s glory, which conversely means we all need a SAVIOR, and the DEVIL wants to keep GOD from receiving HIS GLORy and keep us from being used by GOD for HIS GLORY. Misery loves company! Do you see the battle?
Leader, Peter, was very aware of this battle. Satan had his eyes on Peter, early on. He plays on our human frailties. Satan even requested from Jesus, the right to put pressure on Peter, just like He did earlier with JOB. Peter was aware of the trickery of the ‘Prince of the Power of the Air’. This is why Peter told us, “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour”. The devil uses our flesh, our strengths, our ‘hot buttons’, our NATURE against us. In the great book, “The Bait of Satan”, author John Bevere makes the statement “Offense is a tool of the devil to bring people into captivity.” This is the TRAP in America that is destroying our country and making THE CHURCH impotent in these terminal days- the SPIRIT OF OFFENSE! If you ask someone who has SET A TRAP for an animal, they know that a trap needs two things to be successful: It must be hidden in the hope that an animal will stumble upon it, and it must be baited to lure the animal into the trap’s deadly jaws. This is how the DEVIL has used the mindset of America, the ‘Cancel Culture’, the METOO movement, BLM, reparations, the “PRIVILEGE” movement, and all the other TRAPS in the ‘FORGIVE NOT’ mindset- to destroy this once great country and to make the church no different than the world! It no longer looks like there are 2 teams, it looks like we are all one miserable, bitter, vengeful, unforgiving team. Remember what Jesus said to the RELIGIOUS leaders of His time: You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out his desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, refusing to uphold the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, because he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44)
Conduit, all throughout the NEW TESTAMENT, the new agreement God tells us that we get to choose how HE treats us. God says the standard you use to TREAT OTHERS, that is the standard I will use to JUDGE YOU! In the Sermon on the Mount, God made this part of His closing statement. “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. (Matthew 7:1-5) Many are condemning themselves to separation from God for eternity, because they are following the world’s HATRED, and STRIFE, UNFORGIVENESS and viciousness! In a world keeping ‘record of wrong’, and keeping their POUND OF FLESH, the church is called to be different! In Matthew 18 Peter asked Jesus how many times he should forgive his brother who sins against him. Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?” “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven! (Matthew 18:21-22) What follows that statement is a parable that Jesus told to bring DEEPER MEANING to what Jesus had just told Peter. It is called the Parable of the Unforgiving Debtor. You see we are all DEBTORS. We were at war with GOD, and while we were still at war, while WE WERE STILL SINNERS, God demonstrated HIS LOVE by offering forgiveness and LOVE to those who are willing to HUMBLE themselves and accept HIS payment of death on the cross. (Romans 5:8) When Jesus was bled out, like an animal on the cross, by HIS CREATURES, Jesus said, “Forgive them Father, for they know NOT what they do”. What could another human being do to another human being that is worse than what WE DID TO THE MESSIAH? Remind yourself of God’s command to forgive by reading the parable in Matthew 18:23-35. Beware, is BE AWARE, smushed together. Know that the outcome for your acting like the world and buying into the BAIT OF SATAN and hating like the world hates, by holding a grudge like the world, asking for reconciliation from people, that look like others who hurt people, who look like you 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 420 years ago- has a bad outcome eternally! The parable ends, the same way we will end when we stand before God if we DO NOT REPENT and forgive! Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt. “That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart.” (Matthew 18:34-35) Repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand!