Monday, November 20

Unforgiveness is dangerous!

Scripture: Matthew 5-7

Matthew 6:12 Forgive us the wrongs we have done, as we forgive the wrongs that others have done to us.

Matthew 6:14-15 If you forgive others the wrongs they have done to you, your Father in heaven will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive the wrongs you have done.

Observation/application

Forgiveness is so important.  We must forgive others for our own sake.

Do you realize what you’re praying when you say the Lord’s prayer?  You are asking God to forgive you the same way and to the same degree that you forgive others!  If you refuse to forgive others, you’re asking God to refuse to forgive you!  Unforgiveness is dangerous!

And to drive the point home, Jesus adds His own commentary (v. 14-15) to the prayer—in fact, it is the only part of the prayer that He comments on, which should alert us to how important this is!  If you forgive, you’re forgiven; if you don’t forgive, you’re not forgiven.

This week I’ve had some interactions with people who are upset with each other.  They are hanging on to grievances and talking with others about their grievances.  They are in a very dangerous place!  You must forgive.  You must forgive to be forgiven.  You must let it go.

But it’s a huge reminder for me too.  Who do I need to forgive?  What am I hanging on to?  One quick way to tell I haven’t forgiven is this: am I talking about someone, complaining about their behavior, sharing negative information about them with someone else?  That’s a sure sign that I need to forgive.

My takeaway: let it go.  Forgive.  “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” (Colossians 3:13)

Prayer: Lord, show me where I’m hanging on to a grievance that I need to release, and help me to forgive…every time…for my sake!