(Red-letter portions of the New Testament)

Matthew 5: 25-26, "Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still with him on the way, or he may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. I tell you the truth, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny."

Jesus gives us guidance in interpersonal relationships, with a view to spiritual ones. Don't murder. Don't hold on to unresolved anger. Be reconciled with your brother. To those, he now adds, settle-out-of-court. Good advice also when dealing with the Almighty.

Sometimes we get at odds with God. We hold on to unresolved negative feelings towards Him. We need to be reconciled sooner than later. Otherwise things could go even worse for us.

Jesus is not a fan of courts. Jesus knows firsthand that courts do not always dispense justice. Once a third-party individual gets involved, disputes get more complicated and are taken out of our hands. Personal matters become public. Jesus advises, settle out-of-court.

Jesus is a fan of working things out in our personal relationships. All disputes involve persons and become personal. Jesus wants us to settle our disputes personally and not hide behind "policy" or "its just business," or filing a lawsuit.

Followers have unlimited spiritual resources to use for settling disputes, like faithfulness, diligence, forgiveness, grace, mercy and gratitude. The Spirit gives us love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control to help us settle matters.

Jesus tells his followers not to go to court against each other and even to settle matters with non-believers, as well. We need to settle with God out-of-court, too.

Whatever complaint we have against God or He has against us, it is better to settle it now, instead of waiting until eternal judgment to be rendered. Eternity can upon us without notice and then it will be too late to settle out-of-court.

God is willing to listen to our complaints and feel our pain. He understands that we don't understand what he does and why. He wants to bring a resolution and then move ahead with a restored or deeper relationship of love between Him and us.

Settling up with God, now, can actually help us to settle up with others before things get worse.

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