When it comes to forgiveness
God commands us to forgive without room for excuses for extreme cases or repeat offenders.
To always forgive basically.
How can He demand this of us?
Does He not see the oppressors and those who take advantage of weakness?
Does he not see the insincere regrets of men?
How can He insist on forgiveness?
Because He Himself is our reference point.
It’s as though He foreknew that if the criteria for forgiveness were the details of the offense – then our forgiveness would be hollow.
We are to forgive because we have been forgiven a debt of our own we could not pay.
We are primarily offenders and our sense of being offended against is secondary.
For our debt is the greatest all. Paid in full.
So that should we fail to find a reason grace in the face of an offense,
We might find the strength and will to do so,
in relation to Him.
21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”
22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.[g]
23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold[h] was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.
26 “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.
28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins.[i] He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.
29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’
30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.
32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.
35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”