Forgiveness is a term used to indicate pardon for a fault or offense; to excuse from payment for a debt owed. The two main terms for forgiveness in Hebrew are ‘nasa’ to takeaway (sin) and ‘salach’ to pardon. God is the subject of the latter.
Forgiveness is the vehicle in which God re-appropriated the blessing of His gracious covenant.
The cornerstone of forgiveness is the utter power and authority of Jesus Christ to forgive, Jesus himself declared and demonstrated this authority Lk 5:17-26. Jesus distinguishes his own ministry as one by which forgiveness is mediated to sinners through His blood Matt 26:28, It is the blood of Jesus’ atonement that yields eternal forgiveness of sins ( Jesus is the source of forgiveness) Matt 26:28, Heb 10:11-12. Jesus place enormous emphasis on forgiveness. Matt 18:21-35 details the parable of the unforgiving slave who received divine forgiveness from his master but, refused to give to his fellow servant, this is what we do sometimes, we receive forgiveness from God and other people but refuse to give because we have been hurt or offended and we want to justify the reason for not giving what we have also freely received, in Jesus model prayer, the forgiveness an individual receives is dependent upon the forgiveness the individual gives to those who offend him.
As Christians, forgiveness is also the fundamental condition for Christian fellowship 2 Cor 2:7-10 because we have been redeemed; we are obligated to forgive as we have been forgiven Col 3:13.
There is something however, about the human experience that desires to judge, when we declare something to be unforgiveable, we are sinning by pridefully trying to trump the power and will of God, we are saying that we are more powerful, smarter and more righteous than God if we don’t forgive however, Jesus’ power to forgive is infinite even over the sin of unforgiveness. There is no sin of thought, word or deed via either action, inaction that Jesus’ blood can’t completely and utterly forgive.
In conclusion, Jesus Christ taught that forgiveness is a duty, no limit can be set to the extent of forgiveness (Lk 17:4) and it must be granted without reserve. In essence your forgiving others may change a person with the help of God and will also determine your level of maturity in Christ.
For further Study
Matthew 26:28, Hebrews 10:11-12
Personal declaration for the day
Do you know how quick you forgive is a proof of your maturity as Christian
Questions for you to reflect on
When was the last time you shared forgiveness with other ?