Forgive Them—Day 2
Matthew 6: 14, 15
“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.”
As we meditate on our devotional passage let us remember that this text reinforces the fifth petition of the Lord’s Prayer (6:12). By repeating the same thought so closely together, it stresses the importance of believers being a forgiving community.
Have we forgotten that our communication with God is directly connected to our behavior toward others?
For example I Peter 3: 7, “You husbands, in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”
Can we imagine praying daily and our prayers being hindered because of our behavior toward others or furthermore, because of our lack of forgiveness?
As challenging as it may seem to forgive those who have wronged us, it is more rewarding to forgive and reflect the mercy of our heavenly Father.
Question: Is holding on to a grudge more important than behaving like our Father?
What better way for us as believers to demonstrate the validity of this gospel we preach? When wronged, we share with others what God has shared with us—Forgiveness.
Our devotional text reads, “For if you forgive others.” In Greek, the word forgive is, aphiēmi, af-ee´-ay-mee; the word means to stop blaming or taking offense into account. This same Greek word also means to leave, as in to leave behind or abandon.
Remember at times on this journey, we must be willing to abandon or leave behind those wrongdoings that can cause bitterness and resentment in our hearts. It is impossible to move forward holding on to past offenses. Besides, we do not correctly represent our Christian community continually blaming others when we proclaim to serve One who will heal all pains and right all wrongs.
So which one is it, can our God do all things or is that just all talk?
Question: What is more important seeking revenge, or seeking to be more like God? Alternatively, is it possible to seek them both?
Lord, help us to represent you well by allowing our response to be in keeping with our professions, Amen.