Restore

Third, we must restore broken relations with our enemies. Jesus gives the second example of urgent action in Matt. 5:25-26.

Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison.Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.

The words, “come to terms” is one word in the Greek, eunoeo, which means, “make friends (with).” (Gingrich) The word, “accuser” (Gk. antidikos), means, “enemy, opponent.” (Gingrich) The NASB got it right—“Make friends quickly with your opponent at law while you are with him on the way” (Matt. 5:25, NASB).

The picture here is a lawsuit in court. You are facing a case in court filed against you by your opponent. How soon will you restore good relations with your opponent? Jesus says, “Quickly.”

Again, inner heart conflicts require urgent action. Restore relations with your enemies quickly. Do not delay. Do it now. Quickly. Do it while you are on the way to court. In the previous example, Jesus taught us the priority of reconciliation. In this second example, Jesus taught us the urgency of restoration.

If you do not settle out of court, the judge will throw you to prison. There you will never get out until you pay your last coin. Your last coin means that your punishment is a full punishment. You will have to pay a full payment for a full punishment. The point is—Don’t wait till it’s too late to make peace with others. Don’t wait until it’s too late—when you will pay your last coin. Don’t wait until it’s too late—when God shall judge you.

What is Jesus telling us in this passage? Ongoing anger against someone is tantamount to murder. It is as bad as killing someone. In the kingdom of God, you are liable for your inner anger, and not just your outer hostility. It makes you liable to judgment—God’s judgment. The judgment of God is the consequence of your anger.

Yet in the kingdom of God, a kingdom heart stops being angry. The power of the kingdom of God begins in the heart. Is your heart a kingdom heart a grace-filled heart? This is the mark of a kingdom heart. You reconcile with others quickly before you give your gift to God. You restore relations with your accuser quickly. You do it right away, at once, without delay. You do it immediately, quickly, and urgently.

I’d like to encourage you to come to God now. Ask God to give you a kingdom heart. Tell God, “Oh God, give me a kingdom heart. Fill my heart with grace. Give me a new heart, a new desire to do your will, to be angry no more with my brother, to forgive, and to be reconciled with him.”

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