What Jesus Did! 'Reconcile!' — Matthew 5:25-26

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

[Jesus continued:] "When you are on the way to court with your adversary, settle your differences quickly. Otherwise, your accuser may hand you over to the judge, who will hand you over to an officer, and you will be thrown into prison. And if that happens, you surely won't be free again until you have paid the last penny."
— Matthew 5:25-26 NLT

Key Thought

As Jesus helps us to better understand God's intent, character, and will revealed in the law of Moses, he also shines the light of truth into all the corners we so often try to keep hidden from him. Jesus moves from our human sense of worship in the preceding verses into matters of everyday life with his radical call for reconciliation with our enemies. He wants us to settle our differences quickly before we get into legal proceedings; otherwise matters can escalate out of control and damage us as well as our influence. Jesus emphasizes the urgency of making things right. As God's human children, we may assume falsely that segmenting our lives into sacred and secular compartments is acceptable to God. We deceived ourselves into making worship a weekly event rather than an everyday lifestyle, making our segmented worship unacceptable to God (Romans 12:1-2). To keep us from thinking that settling our differences is only a "church rule" and not a "life rule," Jesus reminds us that reconciliation involves all of life, not just the "religious part." Jesus is serious about forgiveness, mercy, and reconciliation as the way of God and the lifestyle of his children.

Today's Prayer

Almighty God, please forgive me for segmenting my life into separate pieces and not allowing your character and will to transform me through and through. I want you to rule over every part of my life, including my relationships. I want to walk in harmony with my brothers and sisters and to show my loving concern for those who are not part of your Kingdom. Empower me to forgive and to release my grievance before embarrassing my Kingdom family or causing division among your people. In the name of the Lord Jesus, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 Corinthians 6:1-7
  • Colossians 3:12-15
  • Matthew 6:14-15


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Illustration of Matthew 5:25-26 NLT — "When you are on the way to court with your adversary, settle your differences quickly."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.