Today’s AMI QT Devotional, written by Pastor Ryun Chang (AMI Teaching Pastor), was originally posted on January 16, 2013.
Devotional Thought for Today
“Treat Others with Respect”
O Lord my God, if I have done this and there is guilt on my hands—4 if I have done evil to him who is at peace with me or without cause have robbed my foe—5 then let my enemy pursue and overtake me; let him trample my life to the ground and make me sleep in the dust.
Doctors encourage us to self-examine our body to detect for any irregularity. Here, David examines himself to see if he had wronged anyone unintentionally. So important was this to him that he made an oath against himself.
To those whose life’s priority is to climb up the socioeconomic ladder, how we treat others—particularly those who stand in our way as well as seemingly inconsequential people—may not rank very high in our hierarchy of values. That is one reason the apostle Paul was led by the Spirit to write, “Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited” (Rom. 12:16).
But this matter of how we treat others is a big deal to God. It’s because each person, because he or she is “made in God’s likeness” (James 3:9), is inherently precious to the One who made them all; thus, it is important to the LORD how we treat others. Jesus declares, “Do to others what you would have them do to you” (Mt. 7:12). So, if you want to be treated well by others, then do likewise. Ultimately, our motivation behind treating others well should come from how God treats us: with abundant grace and mercy.
So, how have you been doing with respect to this matter? What would your co-workers or friends say about you? Before anything, reflect on how God treats us with respect and dignity which we don’t deserve, right? Would you remember to treat others like that today?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to thank You for treating me with gentleness and kindness that I don’t deserve. I confess that I’ve not done the same to those near me. Forgive me and help me to do better.
Bible Reading for Today: Isaiah 50
Lunch Break Study
Mt. 18:21-34 (ESV): “Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times. 23 “Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. 24 When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. 25 And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26 So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ 27 And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. 28 But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.’ 29 So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ 30 He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. 31 When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. 32 Then his master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33 And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ 34 And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers,[e] until he should pay all his debt.
Questions to Consider
- In the parable, who said verse 32 and to whom was this said?
- Within the context of the parable itself (instead of why Jesus told this), why was verses 32-34 said?
- Ultimately, why does God expect believers to treat others with grace and mercy (James 3:9-10)?
- A king who had forgiven the enormous debt of his servant who couldn’t pay it said this (vs. 32) to this very servant, who, in turn, refused forgive a much smaller debt owed by a fellow servant.
- The king was incensed that this servant acted cruel and demeaning to a fellow servant for not paying back a much smaller debt. This showed that he didn’t appreciate and understand the magnitude of the mercy that he had received.
- First, because God, in Christ, paid the “wages of sin” (Rom. 6:23) that we could not pay, which would have ended in our death in hell (thus, we ought to show gratitude); second, because we have been made in God’s likeness, which is intrinsic to every human being. That’s why discrimination based on race, sex, and class is an abomination to the Lord who abhors favoritism (James 2:1-4).
As you wrap up the day, how did you treat your neighbors today?
Did you try to do anything for them? Recap your day here.