Colossians 3:13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any; even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.
In the midst of personal conflict it’s not always so easy nor do we always feel like forgiving. Forgiveness, though, is by choice not feelings. We can either choose to forgive or choose not to forgive, but our “will” in involved in both. Yes, to be balanced, we do have to look at the passages of Scripture on forgiveness where Jesus told us how to handle offenses (Matthew 18:15-20; Luke 17:1-4) where obligations are given to both sides in an offense. We also need to learn to be like our Lord, ready to forgive and to be merciful. Psalm 86:5 says, For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.”
Eight reasons why it’s in our best interest to learn to forgive:
- It blocks us from receiving God’s forgiveness in our own life (Mark 11:25, 26).
- It puts us in a prison of torment (Matthew 5:25, 26; 18:32‑35).
- It gives Satan an advantage over us (2 Corinthians 2:10, 11).
- It opens us up to physical trouble (Proverb 11:17).
- It can cause us in anger to say things that lead to judgment (Matthew 5:22)
- It reduces our spiritual and supernatural walk to a natural one (1 Corinthians 3:1‑3).
- Its bitter roots can make us mean and mad (Ephesians 4:31).
- It hinders our prayer (Psalm 66:18), our giving (1 Corinthians 13:3), and whatever we offer to God in worship (Matthew 5:28).
Unforgiveness is a refusal to release others from their offenses against us. As you can see there is a high price to unforgiveness. Someone may say, “But I’m right, and they are wrong, they crossed the line, so I’m not going to forgive them.” What if you are driving down a two lane highway and you are doing everything right, staying in your lane on the right side of the road. An eighteen wheel tractor trailer rig crosses over the line and is headed toward you, they are definitely in the wrong and crossed the line. Are you going to hold out for being right and cry out “But I’m right, they’re wrong,” and refuse to yield by pulling over? You would be headed for a lot more hurt than if you would just yield. I think it would be better to just learn to yield.