Matthew 18:22 “Jesus answered, I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”
The disciples asked Jesus how many times they should forgive someone. Jesus said, you must forgive a person seventy-seven times.
There was an African woman who had been terribly beaten and abused by her husband over many years. She was a Christian and believed she had survived because God protected her. She prayed for her husband to become a believer.
After he accepted Christ and repented, he asked his wife for forgiveness. He’d never asked her forgiveness for anything before then.
She was deeply moved by this and started crying. “Jesus says I must forgive you seventy-seven times.”
Then the husband started wailing. “I hurt you many more times than that. It is not enough forgiveness. Is that the limit of the amount of forgiveness I can have?”
“No, Jesus didn’t mean that we should keep a score card and record every time we forgive. Jesus meant that we should keep forgiving over and over again so many times we lose track of them. Then forgiveness becomes the natural response when someone has wronged us. I’ve already forgiven you for every wound and blow.”
The husband cried, “This kind of forgiveness overwhelms me. I don’t deserve it.”
And no one deserves Christ’s forgiveness. He suffered and gave His life for us because he loves us.
And His forgiveness, too, is overwhelming.
Have you received it?