I think we can all agree that forgiveness doesn’t come easy to most. It can be an actual struggle. Some of us can be stubborn or think we’re right and no one can convince us otherwise. It’s definitely a flaw that needs to be worked on.
The Bible gives us so many instructions on the importance of forgiveness. Matthew 6:14-15 says “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you also. But if you do not forgive others of their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” We are commanded to forgive. We cannot receive forgiveness unless we are willing to forgive others.
It is so easy to hold grudges, to be bitter and have resentments. But it’s also sinful. God will not forgive you of your sins if you’re not willing to let go of those grudges, be free of resentment and forgive. In Matthew, Peter asks Jesus how we are to forgive others and Jesus says in Matthew 18:22 ” “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” Right there, a command. Jesus commands us to forgive and not just to forgive but to forgive greatly and wholeheartedly.
Think about every wrong doing you have ever done. Whether that was an action towards someone, a hurtful word, or a sinful thought. Romans 3:23 says “we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” No one is free of sin. Jesus came to this world to die on the cross for our sins so that we may have the opportunity, if we accept it, to have eternal life. He DIED for us, for our sin. If He loved us that much, don’t you think we can forgive those who sin against us? In comparison to what Jesus did for us, forgiving someone of their wrong-doing is the least that we can do.
Forgiveness is essential. It’s essential to relationships. To the success of marriage and friendship. But forgiveness is even more successful to our relationship with Jesus.