Learning to Pray
April 9, 2019
And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
There are two important truths in today’s passage: We need to ask forgiveness for our sins and we need to forgive others when they sin against us. The first is easier than the second.
As a believer Jesus paid the penalty of our sin in full. He bore our sin in His body on the cross. Because of Jesus the heavenly Father declares us, “Not guilty!” The penalty of sin is gone, however, the propensity to sin remains. We are still tempted and give in. When we fail we need to confess our sins knowing that God is “faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
Owning up to our sin and confessing it is not always easy, but the second part of this truth is even harder. When we ask God for forgiveness we come as those who have, by His grace, forgiven others. We should forgive others just as God through Jesus has forgiven us (Ephesians 4:32). Think of the contradiction: “God, we want You to forgive us for sinning against You but we will not forgive the person who has sinned against us!” Forgiveness is always a two-way street.
Father, it is so hard to forgive some people for the pain they have caused. I see the contradiction when I want Your forgiveness but I am unwilling to forgive others. I cannot do this on my own. Give me Your strength, grace and mercy to forgive those who have sinned against me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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