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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Painter

Building a Marriage with Forgiveness

“Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.” Colossians 3:13

Where there is a need for forbearance, there will also always be a need for forgiveness. The word forgive means to overlook an offense and to treat the offender as not guilty.

As the Lord told his disciples, offenses will come. When two imperfect people enter matrimony and share their space there will be offenses, and insults, and emotional distresses that will take place. However, each spouse needs to learn the art of forgiveness if they want peace and harmony to abound predominately in their home.

The Bible tells us not only to forgive, but to forgive how God forgives. How does God forgive? “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” (Psalm 103:12) He puts the memory of our transgression totally out of his presence. This means that He expects us to forgive without holding guilt over the head of the offender.

Forgiveness is a response to love. “Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.” (Colossians 3:19) A husband and wife should forgive each other because they love each other. Where there is no love there is no forgiveness. When there is an absence of forgiveness there is a void that is left in the relationship that will inevitably fill in with bitterness.

Forgiveness strengthens love. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.” (Luke 7:41-43) There is a direct correlation between love and forgiveness. When true forgiveness abounds in a marriage it will feed love and cause the bond of the marriage to be strengthened.

Forgiveness is an act of kindness. “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.” (Ephesians 4:32) It is impossible to have true forgiveness in a marriage unless there is a desire to be kind.

Forgiveness is predetermined. “For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.” (Psalm 86:5) You do not decide to forgive on a case-by-case basis. Rather you predetermine that you will forgive your spouse regardless of what they do.

Married people do not generally intend to be unforgiving toward their spouse. However, forgiveness is simply forgotten. However, if a marriage will be built strong than both husband and wife need to be very quick to forgive each other and move on with life. Our time is to short to be spent in the bitterness of offenses past.

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