Have you ever forgiven someone when

How can I forgive those who have sinned against me?



Each of us has been wrongly done, offended, or sinned against us at some point in life. How should we react when such attacks happen? According to the Bible, we are to forgive. Ephesians 4:32 explains: "Be kind to one another, be compassionate, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you." Similarly, it is written in Colossians 3:13: "bearing one another and forgiving one another when one complains against the other; just as Christ has forgiven you, so you also." The key in both verses is that we should forgive as God forgave us. Why do we forgive? Because we have been forgiven!

Forgiveness would be easy if we only had to give it to those who come to us in sadness and repentance and ask for it. The Bible tells us to forgive those who have sinned against us without any conditions. Refusing to truly forgive someone demonstrates resentment, bitterness, and anger - none of which are meant to be the traits of a Christian. In the Our Father, we ask God to forgive us of our sins, just as we forgive our guilty ones (Matt. 6:12). Jesus says in Matt. 6: 14-15: "For if you forgive men their wrongdoings, your heavenly Father will forgive you also; but if you do not forgive men their wrongdoings, your Father will not forgive your wrongdoings either". Considering other verses that speak of God's forgiveness, the best understanding of Matthew 6: 14-15 is that people who refuse to forgive others have not actually experienced God's forgiveness for themselves.

Every time we miss one of God's commandments by disobedience, we sin against Him. Whenever we mistreat someone, we sin not only against that person but also against God. When we look at the enormity of God's grace to forgive us for ALL of our offenses, we see that we have no right to withhold that grace from others. We have sinned infinitely more against God than anyone could ever do against us. If God forgives us so much, how can we refuse to forgive so little? Jesus' parable in Matt. 18: 23-35 is a powerful illustration of this truth. God promises that when we come to Him and ask for forgiveness, He gives it freely (1 John 1: 9). The forgiveness we give should have no limit, in the same way that God's forgiveness is limitless (Luke 17: 3-4).

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How can I forgive those who have sinned against me?
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