The Power of Forgiveness

By Jason Benham

One of the greatest hang-ups for married couples is in the area of forgiveness. Refusing to forgive and/or refusing to seek forgiveness leaves couples stuck until they deal with the issue at hand.

Fortunately, Jesus gives us some instruction on what to do. In the famous “Lord’s Prayer” we see Him teaching us two areas of forgiveness – debts and trespasses (Matthew 6:12-15).

Debts are something we should have done but failed to do. Like, we owe a certain amount of money but failed to pay it. But debt here is more about our debt to God and others. We are commanded to love God and love others, so when we have failed to show love for God or love for others we have failed to pay our debt.

Trespasses are something we do but should not have done. A trespasser occupies a realm or exercises a right that belongs to someone else. We trespass when we cross a boundary. When we cross someone’s boundary we have not only trespassed against them, but we have trespassed against God. In the Bible, when someone crosses your boundary they become your enemy. This is how a married couple can live in the same house and be enemies at the same time.

So on both occasions, the failure to do what we should have done and doing what we should not have done, we are to seek forgiveness. But the reverse is true as well, when our spouse has failed to do what they should have done or did something they shouldn’t have done, we must forgive.

If we fail to grant forgiveness we will not get forgiveness from God. This is why Jesus teaches us to pray, “forgive us our debts AS WE FORGIVE OUR DEBTORS.” Married couples would do well to remember this.

The word forgiveness means to “let go.” God “lets go” of our offense toward Him when we repent. This sets the stage for us to not only repent to our spouse when we do wrong, but also grant forgiveness when he/she has wronged us.

As married couples we need to know that debts and trespasses are washed away by the power of forgiveness. The moment you choose to let go of a debt or a trespass God will tax the last grain of sand on earth to bless your marriage. Why? Because you are treating one of His kids the same way He treated you.

What can be better than that?


Jason Benham

My aim is simple: I want to get you hooked on God’s Word so that you become the godly man your wife and kids need you to be—the faithful warrior God called you to be. As men, we were made to fight, and our greatest weapon is the Word of God. Armed with His truth, we can win the battles desperately raging against us, our marriages, our families, as well as the culture in which we are called to change.

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