“Mercy Put Into Your Lap” (Matthew 18: 33, ESV) by Carley Evans


Jesus tells a parable of a man settling accounts with his servants. One of his servants owes him a substantial amount of money; the man decides to sell him, his wife, his children in order to settle the debt once and for all. The poor man falls on his knees and begs his master to spare him. “And out of pity for him, the master of that servant releases him and forgives him the debt.” (Matthew 18: 27)

Jesus does not mention whether this servant is grateful. Apparently, he is not for he goes out, finds a servant of the same master, begins to choke him, demanding a considerably lesser amount of money owed to him. The man he is choking falls at his feet, begs him: “Have patience with me, and I will pay you.” (Matthew 18: 29) Instead of having patience, his fellow servant throws him in jail until the debt is paid.

The other servants, of course, tell the master of this lack of mercy, of this unwillingness to forgive.

The master is angry. He throws the servant into jail, demanding repayment of the debt he had forgiven.

“As the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.” (Colossians 3: 13)

“Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” (Luke 6: 37 – 38)

Have mercy and mercy will be put into your lap.