Matthew 18:21 (NKJV) Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.
One day Jesus’s right-hand man, Peter, went to Jesus to have this whole forgiveness thing spelled out for him. Peter said, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Seven seemed like a generous number to Peter. If somebody does the same thing to you over and over, you might put up with it once or twice, but after seven times surely you get a pass to stop trying. But Jesus said, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”
Life is hard, and getting along with others is definitely one of life’s greatest challenges. But Scripture tells us clearly to “live in peace.” (Romans 12:15) Knowing how hard it is to get along with coworkers, many people have asked us how we all work together and still enjoy being with each other. There’s no secret to how this works. It’s all right there in the Bible.
Jesus laid out a way of life for His follower that was “upside down” from the way the rest of the world lived at the time He walked the earth and still is today. Forgiving other people who have wronged us or hurt us or embarrassed us is not easy. In fact, sometimes it seems impossible. But that is what God did for us and what He asks us to do for others.
When we have experienced that kind of radical, extreme forgiveness, then forgiving others suddenly makes all the sense in the world. God’s way often does not make sense but I promise you family it’s the best way!
Pastor James Baker Jr.