Lord’s Prayer notes #6: Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors

Following are the rough teacher’s notes from week 6 of a recent eight-week adult Sunday School series on the Lord’s Prayer. See also week 1, week 2, week 3, week 4, week 5, week 7, and week 8.

“Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors”


  • Hallowed be thy name
  • Thy kingdom come

– Thy will be done…

  • Give us this day…
  • Requires the humility of asking
  • daily (example of Israelites & manna)

1. Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors

– What is forgiveness?
Merriam-Webster: “To stop requiring payment of (money that is owed)”
– What happens when you forgive?
– What happens when you are forgiven?

Read Matthew 18:21-35

2. First thing about forgiveness: we need it

First thing about forgiveness:

  • You can’t tell me I have to forgive them!!!
  • You don’t know what they did to me!
    We did worse to God – you did, I did

Isaiah 53
v1: Who has believed…? Who?

“But though He had performed so many signs before them, yet they were not believing in Him. This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet which he spoke: “LORD, WHO HAS BELIEVED OUR REPOT? AND TO WHOM HAS THE ARM OF THE LORD BEEN REVEALED?” – John 12:37-38

Who? (No one)
To whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? (ungrateful men)

v3: Despised and forsaken of men…
-our sin!
Like one from whom men hide their face He was despised
-our sin
vv4-5: His grace
v6: All of us like sheep…
-God’s great mercy, forgiving us our debts
v8: By oppression and judgment…
What is this (sin: sinful injustice)
Whose? (OURS)
Ours?!?!?! (yes)

Read Matthew 23:29-31

“Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets, and it was your fathers who killed them. So you are witnesses and approve the deeds of your fathers; because it was they who killed them, and you build their tombs.” – Luke 11:47-48

v8: “Who considered…”
Who considered that? (no one)

Matthew 27:39-44

v11: …and He will bear their iniquities
v12: …Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, And interceded for the transgressors.

We don’t want to believe we’re in that number
But…that’s who Jesus died to save.
Debts being forgiven—we need that!
We are debtors

First thing about forgiveness: not “you can’t tell me…”
– Rather: “We need it!”

“…for He Himself is kind to evil and ungrateful men” – Luke 6:35
– Like those people (we think)
– Did not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

3. 2nd thing about forgiveness: we must forgive.

  • Our king commands us
  • Our king has gone before us
  • We can’t say, “You just don’t understand”

4. Application

What is it for you?
– Too soft?
– Too harsh?
– Overprotective?
– Too emotional?
– Distant and professional?
Son, daughter:
– Didn’t stay in way you taught them?
– Has never followed you like she ought to?
– Betrayed you?
– The person who falsely accused you (anonymously)
Boss you never got along with?

What else?

Read Luke 17:3-5,7-10
– As master… (balk!!!)
– Turnabout in verse 10

Our version of Lord’s Prayer: “Lord, help me forgive Bill”
God’s version: “Forgive us our debts”!

Our forgiveness of others is a sign of God’s forgiveness of us.
Our forgiveness is sweet because we’ve been forgiven much.

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