Read Matthew 6:12, 14-15
“And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
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.”
One of the hardest things to do, one of the greatest obstacles in life, is to forgive those that have hurt you. And yet, forgiveness is the key to the Gospel and freedom.
Jesus tells a story in Luke 7 that teaches much about forgiveness.
“36 Now one of the Pharisees was requesting Him to dine with him, and He entered the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining at the table in the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume, 38 and standing behind Him at His feet, weeping, she began to wet His feet with her tears, and kept wiping them with the hair of her head, and kissing His feet and anointing them with the perfume. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet He would know who and what sort of person this woman is who is touching Him, that she is a sinner.”
40 And Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he replied, “Say it, Teacher.” 41 “A moneylender had two debtors: one owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they were unable to repay, he graciously forgave them both. So which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.” And He said to him, “You have judged correctly.” 44 Turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave Me no kiss; but she, since the time I came in, has not ceased to kiss My feet. 46 You did not anoint My head with oil, but she anointed My feet with perfume. 47 For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little.” 48 Then He said to her, “Your sins have been forgiven.” 49 Those who were reclining at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this man who even forgives sins?” 50 And He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
If we have been forgiven most, than we should be the most forgiving. When we truly understand the Gospel, when we truly understand God’s forgiveness with us, we should have no response but to be forgiving toward others.
Those who have been forgiven much should love much.
1. List some ways Jesus talks about forgiveness in Matthew 6:12-15.
2. In what ways do you struggle to forgive others? Write out an action step you can take this week to forgive.
3. When did you understand God’s forgiveness toward you? Remember that today, and preach the Gospel of grace and forgiveness to yourself this week.