IT has been truly said  that "he who cannot forgive others, breaks down the bridge over which he himself must pass." 

The same important lesson was forcibly taught by our Saviour in one of his parables. A certain king found, on examining his affairs, that one of the officers in the employ of the government owed him the enormous sum of ten thousand talents, equal, at the lowest estimation, to not less than fifteen million dollars! The officer was unable to pay this vast debt, and the king gave orders that he should be sold as a slave, with his wife and children, and all that he had, that payment might be made.

The wretched man pleaded for mercy; if his sovereign would only grant him time, he would pay the debt. The monarch's heart was touched with pity, and knowing it would be impossible for him ever to pay so vast a sum, he freely forgave him.

With what joy must that man's heart have been filled! How earnestly he must have sought to show his gratitude for such royal favor! Alas, that very day he met a fellow servant who owed him only a hundred pence (about fourteen dollars), and seizing him roughly by the throat demanded payment. The poor debtor tremblingly exclaimed, in the self-same words used by the other, "Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all."But the unfeeling creditor would hear of no delay, and cast the man into prison till the full amount should be paid. No wonder that the king was very angry on hearing of this transaction, and delivered the cruel servant to the same fate to which he had condemned his fellow.

As we read this account we are filled with indignation against that ungrateful, hard-hearted man, and we feel that his punishment was just. Yet how often do we pursue a similar course. Our sins against God, which have been so great as to cost the life of his dear Son, are represented by the ten thousand talents; the sins which others commit against us are represented by one hundred pence. What a contrast! And how great appears the sin of him who having been forgiven so vast a debt refuses to forgive the little injuries and wrongs received from his fellow-creatures!

Young friends, when tempted to cherish an unforgiving spirit, think how many times you have sinned against God, and how much you need his forgiveness; remember the prayer our Saviour taught us, "Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors;" and then forgive, as you would be forgiven. 


M. A. D.