Forgive us for our sins, just as we have forgiven those who sinned against us. [Matthew 6:12 (NCV)]

Yes, if you forgive others for their sins, your Father in heaven will also forgive you for your sins. But if you don’t forgive others, your Father in heaven will not forgive your sins. [Matthew 6:14-15 (NCV)]

“All I want is an apology,” he said, “and then I’ll forgive him.” But that’s not how it works! Jesus said nothing about requiring an apology or waiting for amends to be made before granting forgiveness. In fact, God’s forgiveness is offered with a unique proviso: we have to extend forgiveness to others if we expect to receive it from God.

We have a god who loves us unconditionally and forgives us endlessly, but we also have a god who demands that we love others as much as ourselves and forgive them as ceaselessly as we are forgiven. We can’t have one without the other.

Lord, it’s so much easier to accept your forgiveness than to extend our own. Please, give us obedient, loving and forgiving hearts.

Forgiveness always seems so easy, when we need it, and so hard when we need to give it. [Dr. Jim L. Wilson, from “Fresh Start Devotionals”]

Bear with each other, and forgive each other. If someone does wrong to you, forgive that person because the Lord forgave you. Even more than all this, clothe yourself in love.Love is what holds you all together in perfect unity. [Colossians 3:3-4 (NCV)]