Jesus taught that we should forgive others in the same manner God forgives us. He clearly said, “Only if you forgive those who sin against you will your heavenly Father forgive you.” And when asked by the disciples to teach them how to pray, one of the petitions Jesus said to use is, “forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.”
But you say, “I just can’t forgive that easily. The wrong done to me is too great.” Well, if that is true, then instead of praying, “forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us,” you should pray, “Lord don’t forgive me because I don’t want to forgive the other person.” Is that what you want?
Or you might say, “I can forgive that person, but I can’t forget what he/she did to me.” Well, if you pray for God to forgive you as you forgive others, and you can’t or refuse to forget the sin done to you, then you should also pray, “ Lord forgive me my sins but don’t forget them. Keep throwing them in my face as I do to the one who sinned against me.” But God doesn’t forgive that way. When God forgives our sins, God also forgets our sins. God doesn’t keep bringing our sin up again and again. When God forgives our sins they are erased from His memory.
Or you might say, “I will forgive and I will forget, but I can’t keep on forgiving. There is a limit to my forgiveness.” All right, then when you pray, “forgive my sins as I forgive those who sin against me,” you should also add, “forgive me for a little while and then you can quit.” God’s forgiveness is unlimited. His mercy is beyond our ability to comprehend. God doesn’t keep a record book listing all our sins, and He requires that we do the same. We must be willing to forgive the other person over and over again, because divine and human forgiveness go hand in hand. Amen.