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When you pray, forgive

Rev Enoch Thompson | FEBRUARY 14, 2023 | MATTHEW 6:12, 14-15


Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. Matthew 6:12 (NIV)


When we stand before God in prayer we are instructed by our Saviour and Master Jesus Christ to forgive other people for the offences they have committed against us. It is natural to nurse hurt feelings and to seek ways to deal with our offender, to pay them back in their own coin, or a bigger coin if possible.

We struggle to forgive because it is contrary to our nature, but it even gets worse when the offender keeps repeating their offence, and because we do not retaliate, because we are meek, they keep adding salt to our injuries. It is not our part to seek revenge (as we have seen earlier).

We are to pray for the grace to forgive, for it takes divine empowerment to forgive. We are to forgive because God in Christ has forgiven us; “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Col 3:13 (NIV).

There are people who hide behind the Christian duty to forgive and keep on hurting their spouses, children, church members, colleagues they know are Christian etc. For such, if we are any of such, the reminder of something else the Lord said is important; "Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin! Such things must come, but woe to the man through whom they come! Matt 18:7-8 (NIV). If our continued provocation makes other people struggle with the issue of forgiveness, we can be sure that we will face the judgment of God.

Our forgiveness of our offenders paves the way for God to forgive us of the sins that stand between our prayers and His answers, between us and our God. We must lift up hands that have been cleansed from holding the faults of others against them (1 Tim 2:8).


Search your heart to ensure that you deal with all known and unknown sins, because they stand between us and God. Decide to forgive your offenders, truly. You may not forget their hurts against you, but you can choose not to use it against them, that is forgiveness.


Father in Heaven, I acknowledge that it is not easy for me to forgive people when they offend me. Please grant me the grace to forgive people and mean it. I also admit that though I have become a saint by your new view of me, because of the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, I sin by my thoughts, words and actions. Please forgive me for my sins and answer my prayers. In Jesus’ precious Name, Amen.



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