For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you “But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions. Matthew 6:14-15
What’s true forgiveness? It cost Jesus His life and the wrath of God. God now sees His children through the blood of Jesus. Jesus paid the price for my sins and the sins of the world. I need to see others through the blood of Jesus on the cross.
But how do I actually develop this mindset? I can say “I forgive you.” A week later I may see you and remember the hurt that I felt; indeed, my life may still be broken from that hurt … but my will is saying that “I forgive you.”
As Jesus hung from the cross, He said “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.” He acknowledged that the people nailed Him to the cross, but He did not want the penalty of what they did to be held to their account.
Is that it? You can break my arm, but I forgive you today, even though my arm needs to heal. I’ll still remember that you broke my arm, but I choose not to hold a grudge against you. Instead, I comfort you as Paul urges the Corinthians in . 2:5-8
Our Father is so gracious that He no longer remembers my sin as far as the East is from the West, but the evidence of my sin remains. Jesus was still crucified, but the victory is that Jesus rose from the dead; He sees you and me as we sin, and He sits at the right hand of the Father interceding for you and me, asking the Father to see me washed in the blood of His perfect sacrifice! Debt paid, forgiveness accomplished.
How do I forgive like that? Emotions are not a factor of Godly forgiveness. When I’m thinking about how a person hurt me, I have my thoughts on myself. When Jesus chooses to forgive me, He has His thoughts on me, and He chooses to love me and remind the Father that He paid the price for my sin. Then, the Holy Spirit comforts me.
What if I were to get my thoughts off of me and my hurt, and turn my thoughts to the one who hurt me and ask the Father to forgive her and bless her?
The father of the prodigal son remembered what the son had done but watched for his return and girded up his robes to run to meet him. He forgave his son, but the consequences of the son’s sins remained. The father had no remaining inheritance to give him.
What offenses do you need to pardon … I have some work to do, do you?
My prayer for you
Heavenly Father, bless us with Your Perspective. Help us to see those who offend us through the blood of Your own dear Son’s blood. Enable us to put aside our emotions and look upon them with gratitude for all the good that is in them and pray a blessing upon them. Heal our wounds and empower us through Your Holy Spirit to pour out rivers of forgiveness and blessings from the depths of our being upon them. Only through the power of Your Holy Spirit is this possible. In the name above all names, we will give You the praise. Amen.
Won’t you share how you go about forgiving others?