Forgiveness: Ours and Others

And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us.  And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

Luke 11:4

This verse is a part of “the Lord’s Prayer.”  If we are going to follow this model of prayer that the Lord laid out for us, we are going to have to pray verse 14.  Verse 14 is a tough verse to pray.  We all like the “forgive us our sins…” part.  That part is easy to pray.  We all have sins and we all need them forgiven.  But the next part is much more difficult: “for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us.”  Think of that – we to ask for forgiveness in part because we forgive those who are indebted to us.  That is a “hard saying.”

I understand (and am thankful for) the fact that our forgiveness is based on the mercy and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and in His finished work on the cross.  But what if our forgiveness was based entirely on our willingness to forgive others?  How much would we be forgiven?  Would we be forgiven at all.  It’s like the story Jesus told about servant who was forgiven of an impossible multi-billion dollar equivalent debt, only to beat another servant over a few dollars.

It is easy to want forgiveness for ourselves, but it is an entirely different thing to give it to others.  But if we are going to pray for our own forgiveness without being willing to forgive others, we will find those prayers to be ineffectual.  When you think about it, it would be highly presumptuous and even hypocritical to expect to be forgiven but no to be forgiving.  But that is how many Christians live: forgiven but not forgiving.  Let it not be so with us.

One response to this post.

  1. “When you think about it, it would be highly presumptuous and even hypocritical to expect to be forgiven but no to be forgiving. But that is how many Christians live: forgiven but not forgiving. Let it not be so with us.”

    Let it not be so with me, Lord. Amen.

    Blessings and thanks for sharing, Ben
    ann

    Reply

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