Sermon September 10, 2017

Matthew 18:1-20 - God Is Serious about Forgiveness 

1At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 

2And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them 

3and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 

4Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 

5“Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, 

6but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea. 

7“Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the one by whom the temptation comes! 

8And if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life crippled or lame than with two hands or two feet to be thrown into the eternal fire. 

9And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into the hell of fire. 

10“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven. 

12What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? 

13And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. 

14So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish. 

15“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. 

16But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 

17If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. 

18Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. 

19Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 

20For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”

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