Jesus, after teaching his disciples how to pray, concludes his thoughts with the following statement, “Yes, if you forgive others for their sins, your Father in heaven will also forgive you of your sins. But if you don’t forgive others, your Father in heaven will not forgive your sins.” (Matt 6: 14, NCV) I’m not sure if the disciples really grasped the importance of this simple concept that Jesus presented to them at that moment; I’m also not sure people really understand the gravity of that rule today, though it is still in effect. To make it even clearer, Jesus is expressing that one should not even expect forgiveness for his or her own wrong doing from God if he or she will not forgive others for their wrong doing.  Jesus explained the importance of forgiveness on several occasions, yet it doesn’t appear that forgiveness is one of the principles that is highly emphasized today. So many people struggle with forgiveness; some, to the point that they will hold grudges or hate others for a lifetime. Jesus is the epitome of forgiveness so if you’re striving to be “Christ-like” then forgiveness should be one of your finest attributes as well, right!? Reconsider what the bible has to say regarding forgiveness and how that Jesus freely gave his life for our forgiveness and reunion with God; know also that God will not forgive you if you don’t forgive others and heaven cannot be your eternal home.

MD 4/27/12