Pastor’s Corner: Much Debt, Much Grace

Money is a funny thing. It always seems like no matter how much I have, a little more would be much nicer. I don’t mean to sound ungrateful.
By Pastor David Werner
I am very blessed to have a certain level of financial stability. But I have a certain amount of financial worry in the form of student loans. Again I am fortunate that the amount I needed to take out was relatively smaller than most students. Looking forward, I can see my loans being paid in a few years rather than over the better part of a decade.
Debt seems to create a certain sense of uneasiness. Debt feels like a weight that only increases as time goes on. And the more debt we accrue, the heavier the burden feels. But once the bill is settled and the last monthly payment paid, the sense of freedom is incomparable.
Jesus told a short parable regarding debt in Luke 7:41-42: “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both.” As was common when Jesus told a parable, this short story he told was directed at a specific individual; a religious leader who reviled the kindness a sinful woman showed to Jesus. In response, Jesus told this specifically directed parable and concluded by asking, “So which of them will love him more?” The answer is very obvious, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.”
Jesus makes the point clear, “For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little.” Scripture tells us that we are all in a state of spiritual bankruptcy. We have all fallen short and missed the mark. The good news is that Jesus stands ready to forgive all who would ask. I know if my financial debt (which will eventually be paid) was forgiven, I would be very grateful. How much more grateful should we be when our spiritual debt (which we have no chance of repaying on our own) is forgiven?
The question and challenge that we are left with is this: since we have been forgiven much, will we love much? Will we express our gratitude to the Savior for his grace by our love for Him? And will we extend that love to those around us?

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