Matthew 6:14-15 (TPT) “And when you pray, make sure you forgive the faults of others so that your Father in Heaven will also forgive you. But if you withhold forgiveness from others, your Father withholds forgiveness from you.”
As believers, the Word of God instructs us to walk in forgiveness. When a Christian harbors unforgiveness, it is a deliberate sin because of the person’s refusal to respond to God’s instruction – “forgive, that you may be forgiven”.
By the Word, a person’s refusal to forgive is a conscious rejection of God and His forgiveness. The Bible identifies such sin as unbelief.
Hebrews 3:12 (TPT) says “So search your hearts every day my brothers and sisters, and make sure that none of you has evil or unbelief hiding within you. For it will lead you astray, and make you unresponsive to the Living God. This is the time to encourage each other to never be stubborn or hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”
Unbelief leads us away from God and makes us unresponsive to Him. A person who is in unforgiveness is deceived, not realizing that their own stubborn unbelief is causing their heart to be hardened towards God. With a hardened heart, a person cannot receive from God.
Hebrews 10:26 (NKJV) says “For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins.”
When a person willfully does not forgive, they reject the offer of forgiveness God has made to us through Jesus Christ. Without Christ’s forgiveness, there is no remaining sacrifice for sins; which means no salvation.
John 3:16 (NKJV) says “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Today’s encouragement is for you to believe in God’s forgiveness of your sins through the sacrifice of Christ, so that you may forgive others, even as God has forgiven you.
Mark 11:25-26 (TPT) “And whenever you stand praying, if you find that you carry something in your heart against another person, release him and forgive him so that your Father in Heaven will also release you and forgive you of your faults. But if you will not release forgiveness, don’t expect your Father in Heaven to release you from your misdeeds.”