“A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And [Jesus] said to him, “You have judged rightly.” (Luke 7:41-43 ESV)
Imagine someone paying off all your financial debt. How would you respond to that person? I suppose you would give him your highest regard and honor him with love. The cost of forgiveness was not cheap for Jesus because he gave up his life. By his forgiveness and grace we get to enter heaven.
But why did he have to die? Why couldn’t just say, “You are forgiven?”He died because he needed to fulfill God’s law. For the “wages of sin is death” and he paid it by surrendering himself to a cross. However, our response to his sacrifice might not match the reverence he truly deserves.
Jesus’s used the story of the moneylender to help us understand how much his forgiveness covers, and how the proper response from us is to completely love him in return. When we sin, we should never say, “Oh well. God forgives me anyway.” That cheapens his grace and is very disrespectful. Sometimes people don’t realize that our sins cost him his life. Would anyone else sacrifice their child to pay off someone else’s debt? Jesus ransomed us from death and hell, and we should not be so cold by treating our Lord like a “good-to-know” story or philosophy.
Jesus desires our hearts and a relationship with us. He is God and yet somehow it doesn’t fully register in our minds because we have not properly reconciled our account. If every one of my sins were itemized on paper, the pages they fill would be too voluminous. And if I were to examine each line, every sin would be stamped with the words “CANCELLED by the blood of Christ.”
Lord, forgive me for all the times I took you and your work for granted. You paid my debt, and I owe everything to you. Thank you for helping me understand the price you paid for my life. My heart belongs to you, and along with that I offer you my love. Amen.