We have all been hurt or offended by somebody in our lives. You may have been in situations where people have deliberately done or spoken bad things against you. You were right and he/she was wrong. You didn’t deserve to be offended or hurt by that person; But the question is, when somebody offends us, what should we do? How should you feel towards the person who has offended you? What would Jesus do if He were in YOUR position? What does Jesus SAY you should do?
Mark 11:25-26 NKJV
“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”
Unforgiveness is defined as: a grudge against someone who has offended you; not having the compassion to forgive; a resentful attitude that spews out all types of evil
Unforgiveness according to Jesus is a sin. No matter how we have been hurt or offended by somebody, it is a CHOICE whether to FORGIVE or to NOT FORGIVE.
Jesus prefers and teaches that you should CHOOSE to FORGIVE anyone who has offended or hurt you in any form.
Matthew 18:21-22 NKJV
Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.
How often should you forgive an offence against you?
Jesus teaches that there should be no limit to your ability to forgive your offenders. It’s hard I know. It’s not easy. But Jesus being crucified on the cross for our sins was not easy too. Whilst hanging in terrible pain on the cross, Jesus prayed for us to the Father in Heaven: “Father, FORGIVE THEM, for they do not know what they do” – Luke 23:34 NKJV
When you understand the sacrifice that Jesus made for YOU individually; and when you understand that even though YOU too are not perfect, Jesus was crucified for YOU and your sins, then why would you not want to forgive somebody else whom Jesus also died on the cross for?
1 Corinthians 13:5 NIV
… (LOVE) is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Indeed it is a hurtful thing when we are offended, however God does not expect us to remain hurt & unforgiving towards others. He expects us to move past the hurt by allowing the love and peace of God to rule our hearts & minds.
Luke 11:2-4 NLT
Jesus said, “This is how you should pray: … as we forgive those who sin against us.”
To Forgive means to: Stop feeling angry or resentful toward (someone) for an offense, flaw, or mistake.; To excuse for a fault or an offense; pardon
Nobody is perfect. We all make mistakes. Therefore, we all need forgiveness. Romans 3:23 says “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
Jesus therefore taught that as we pray to the Father, we must talk to God about those who have offended us.
Is it okay to tell God all the pain that you feel concerning those who have hurt you? Yes it’s okay!
Is it okay to pray to the Lord about our offenders? Yes it’s okay! However as we pray to God about our offenders, we must not be hateful towards them, but rather Jesus guides us as to how we should pray pertaining to those who sin against us. Jesus says that as we pray, we must ultimately forgive our offenders; we must tell God that we forgive those who have hurt us and we must make the decision to forgive.
Matthew 6:14-15 NKJV
“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”
If we expect God to forgive us, then we too must also forgive those who hurt or offend us. When we forgive others we are actually freeing ourselves from the bondage of hate, resentment and anger. Whenever we operate in hate, resentment and anger we give the devil a foothold and we are not able to behave and respond according to God’s will and character.
The devil’s deception is that if we do not forgive those who offend us, we are perhaps hurting the offender by choosing not to forgive them. The truth is, in God’s eyes, we are hurting ourselves more than we hurt the offender if we do not forgive.
When we do not forgive others, neither will God forgive us.
Matthew 7:12 NKJV
Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.
Because we all make mistakes, and we all at some point in life will offend or hurt somebody else’s feelings, we then must be able to forgive others if we also expect to be forgiven by other people when we make a mistake.
Why should i forgive others? God forgave you. Forgiveness heals you. Forgiveness is an expression of the love of God in your life.
TODAY, if you have anyone whom you have not forgiven – make a CHOICE to forgive them NOW.