31 Days of Purity: Forgive Others

Day 26

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In Matthew 18, Jesus told a parable about a servant forgiven an impossibly large debt by his master.

“But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.

“Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ (Matt. 18:28-33)

So Paul teaches the Ephesian Christians,

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32)

You may be asking, “What in the world does forgiving others have to do with 31 days of purity”? It has everything to do with personal purity. Even when you are neck-deep in sin, or even better, deeply engaged in the battle against sin, the bitter roots of unforgiveness can be spreading throughout your heart. God’s Word tells us that the one who is forgiven much is also willing and eager to forgive others. It is entirely possible that as you’ve indulged in sexual impurity you have been carrying around a secret bitterness toward the objects of your disordered affections. Or perhaps you’ve been sinned against sexually in the past and the bitterness has grown. The pain and consequences of another person’s sin against you may be acute and enduring.

As you have sought forgiveness from God for your impurity, have you considered your need to forgive others? Are you willing to let go of the bitterness? Are you willing to forgive them and pray for their blessing and growth? This may be a difficult but necessary step forward in your growth towards holiness.

Father, you have forgiven me of a debt that I could not pay. My debt to you was so much greater, and yet I so easily remember the sins of others against me. Reveal to my heart the places where I have not forgiven others and give me the grace to forgive them if and when they ask. I pray that you would bless those that have done me harm. Restore my bitter heart with a heart of deep forgiveness and appreciation for your grace. Amen.