Christmas is a Special Time for Giving

Matthew 18:21-35

Forgiveness is the gift you give yourself. 


  • I will forgive, but not _forget_.

*TRUTH: Biblical forgiveness keeps no records of wrongs.


  • I have the right to hold on to _anger_.

*TRUTH: Biblical forgiveness clearly declares not to stay mad and hold a grudge. 

Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,

Ephesians 4:26, ESV


  • Things will never be the _same_. 

*TRUTH: Biblical forgiveness is totally about reconciliation. 

Unhealthy responses of unforgiveness: 


*Anger/ Hatred



Results of unforgiveness:

*Personal _unforgiveness_

*12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. 14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, 15 but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Matthew 6:12-15

Results of unforgiveness:

Unnecessary _burdens_. 

*1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. 

Hebrews 12:1-3

Results of unforgiveness:

Allowing the Devil a _foothold_.

*26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil. 

Ephesians 4:26-27

Steps toward forgiveness- Your obligation and motivation

*12 Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.

Colossians 3:12-13

  • We are commanded to _forgive_.
  • We are _forgiven_ by God.

Advice to avoid the root of bitterness (Hebrews 12:15)

  • Acknowledge the pain.
  • *Imagine being on the other side. (Matthew 7:12)
  • *Remind yourself of God’s forgiveness. (1 John 1:9)
  • *Let go of the hurt. (1 Corinthians 13:5
  • *Continue to _forgive_. (Luke 11:4)
  • *_Pray_ for the person who hurt you. (Matthew 5:44)

Remember this principle of God’s sovereignty into forgiveness…….

*We can forgive because God is ultimately working through EVERY event in our lives to bring about His goodness for us.

*And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28