What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness? Forgiveness is more of a dominant theme throughout the Holy Scriptures. Unfortunately, many are still struggling to understand or put it into practice. This does not exclude the fact that some people are ignorant of the deep spiritual truths behind the very act of forgiving. Whatever the case, we hereby write to help you by presenting the best Bible verses about forgiveness. Note that no one can come before God if he/she lacks a forgiving heart. Christianity revolves around forgiveness. That is, God forgiving our sins through the blood of his son, Jesus Christ, which was shed on the cross, and we in-turn forgiving all those who wrong us. It is only by doing so that we can hope to meet God through Christ in the world to come.

An unforgiving heart does not know God nor his Commands (Key Teachings of Jesus Christ). In the likeness of our heavenly Father, we ought to overflow in love, mercy, compassion, charity and forgiveness. In as much as we love because God had first loved us, we also forgive because he had first forgiven us. Remember Jesus’s command which is for us to love God and also love our neighbors as we love ourselves. Behold, Jesus’s command for us revolves around love. And he who talks about love talks about forgiveness. Remember that forgiveness is one of the fruits of genuine love. It was out of love that God sent his only beloved son as a sacrificial lamb who takes away the sins of the world. Jesus himself freely gave up his own life out of love so that our sins can be forgiven.

What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

Things you should know (What the Scriptures say about Forgiveness)

1. The Joy of Forgiveness

Forgiveness comes with tremendous joy than you can imagine. Sure that you are asking yourself how, given that forgiveness is not one of the natural qualities of a human. This leads us to answering the question on how to forgive? As followers of Christ, we forgive by faith, out of obedience to God’s commands. It is worth pointing to the fact that forgiveness goes against the human nature. However, those in Christ are they that died with him and had their human natures buried in order to rise with new natures in him. This is to say that as followers of Christ, we have been given new natures by the birth of Water and the Holy Spirit. And as such, our old self is gone and we are now new creatures in Christ with a forgiving heart. When we forgive, God frees our hearts from anger, bitterness, and resentment.

2. Forgiveness as a conscious choice

Many have been wondering on whether forgiveness is a conscious choice, or an emotional state. Truth be told, forgiveness is a conscious choice which we make. It is a decision that has its roots in our will and is motivated by obedience to God’s command to forgive those who wrong us. We are instructed by the Holy Scriptures to forgive just as God forgave us. Colossians 3:13 – “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”

More on what the Scriptures say about forgiveness

1. All of us are in need of forgiveness – Romans 3:23

Romans 3:23 – “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” Brethren, let no one deceive you because we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. That’s we’ve all wronged God in one way or the other. Thus, we all need forgiveness. That’s why God sent his son, Jesus Christ, to come and take our place on the cross at Calvary. Through his sacrifice that takes away sins, we can all have our sins forgiven by asking God. In as much as we are turning unto God for forgiveness, we should also welcome all those coming to us for forgiveness.

2. Forgiving others is a prerequisite for our own forgiveness Mathew 6:14-15

Matthew 6:14-15 – “For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” Behold, God is more than ever willing and ready to forgive us our sins. However, he request that we start by forgiving others so that our own sins can as well be forgiven. Failing to do this means that God won’t also let us go freely.

3. We owe others forgiveness even when they do not ask for it – Matthew 18:15

Matthew 18:15 –If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother” It is important to note that apologizing is not a prerequisite for Christians to forgive those who have wronged them. That’s why you shouldn’t sit back waiting for apologies before forgiving those who have hurt you. People generally sit-back waiting for the words “I’m sorry” before thinking of forgiveness. Truth be told, this is not the Biblical approach from Jesus Christ. God commands us to be the initiator in the transaction of forgiveness. This very truth counts much for what the Bible says about forgiveness.

4. Lack of forgiveness breaks our fellowship with God – Matthew 5:23-24

Matthew 5:23-24 – “So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift” The scriptures are clear on the fact that harboring bitterness, anger, and resentment in our hearts is sin. By so doing, we are moving ourselves far away from God’s glorious presence.

5. We owe forgiveness to those who don’t deserve it – Acts 7:59-60

Acts 7:59-60 – “And as they were stoning Stephen, he called out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” And falling to his knees he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep” God’s command to forgive is not applicable only onto those that we find easy to love and judge worthy to be forgiven. We ought to forgive even those who are hard to love and those that we find no reason to forgive them. It is only by so doing that we can consider ourselves as Children of God with a renewed heart in Christ. Stephen requested God’s forgiveness on those who killed him in as much as Jesus did on the cross for those who nailed him. These are examples which we ought to follow.

6. There are consequences for choosing not to forgive – Matthew 18:34-35

Matthew 18:34-35 – “And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart” Just as there are benefits for forgiving there are also consequences for not forgiving. Rejecting forgiveness does more harm to you than you can imagine. With a heavy heart due to your inability to forgive comes anger, bitterness, stress, and resentment. In addition, not forgiving others means that God won’t also forgive you.

7. We owe others an unlimited amount of forgiveness – Matthew 18:21-22

Matthew 18:21-22“Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven” Given that forgiveness is hard, doing it over and over again can seem impossible for many. However, this is what God wants from men and women; that they forgive those who wrong them over and over again without hesitation. By so doing, we are pleasing God and bringing glory to his Holy Name.

What The Bible Says About Forgiveness [All Scriptures from the Amplified Bible]

Group 1 – What The Bible Says About Forgiveness

Numbers 15:25 – “Then the priest shall make atonement for all the congregation of the sons of Israel, and they will be forgiven, for it was an error and they have brought their offering, an offering by fire to the Lord, and their sin offering before the Lord, for their error.”

Exodus 10:17 – “Now therefore, please forgive my sin only this once [more], and pray and entreat the Lord your God, so that He will remove this [plague of] death from me.

Numbers 14:19 – “Please pardon the wickedness and guilt of these people according to the greatness of Your lovingkindness, just as you have forgiven these people, from Egypt even until now.”

Matthew 6:15 – “But if you do not forgive others [nurturing your hurt and anger with the result that it interferes with your relationship with God], then your Father will not forgive your trespasses.

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Joshua 24:19 –Then Joshua said to the people, “You will not be able to serve the Lord [if you serve any other gods], for He is a holy God; He is a jealous God [demanding what is rightfully and uniquely His]. He will not forgive your transgression [of His law] or your sins.

Numbers 15:26 – So all the congregation of the Israelites will be forgiven as well as the stranger who lives among them as a resident alien, because all the people were involved in the error.

Numbers 15:28 – “The priest shall make atonement before the Lord for the person who commits an error when he sins unintentionally, making atonement for him so that he may be forgiven.

Deuteronomy 21:8 – Forgive Your people Israel whom You have redeemed, O Lord, and do not put the guilt of innocent blood among Your people Israel.’ And the guilt of blood shall be forgiven them.”

Group 2 – What The Bible Says About Forgiveness

Psalm 25:18 – “Look upon my affliction and my trouble, And forgive all my sins.

2 Chronicles 7:14 – “and My people, who are called by My Name, humble themselves, and pray and seek (crave, require as a necessity) My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear [them] from heaven, and forgive their sin and heal their land.

1 Samuel 25:28 – Please forgive the transgression of your maidservant; for the Lord will certainly make my lord a secure and enduring house, because my lord is fighting the battles of the Lord, and evil will not be found in you all your days.”

Psalm 32:6 – “Therefore, let everyone who is godly pray to You [for forgiveness] in a time when You [are near and] may be found; Surely when the great waters [of trial and distressing times] overflow they will not reach [the spirit in] him.

Nehemiah 9:17 – “They refused to listen and obey, And did not remember Your wondrous acts which You had performed among them; So they stiffened their necks and [in their rebellion] appointed a leader in order to return them to slavery in Egypt. But You are a God of forgiveness, Gracious and merciful and compassionate, Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness; And You did not abandon them.”

Psalm 32:1 – “[ Blessedness of Forgiveness and of Trust in God. ] [ A Psalm of David. A skillful song, or a didactic or reflective poem. ] Blessed [fortunate, prosperous, favored by God] is he whose transgression is forgiven, And whose sin is covered.

Nehemiah 4:5 – “Do not forgive their wrongdoing and do not let their sin be wiped out before You, for they have offended the builders [and provoked You].

Group 3 – What The Bible Says About Forgiveness

Psalm 103:3 – “Who forgives all your sins, Who heals all your diseases;

Psalm 85:2 – “You have forgiven the wickedness of Your people; You have covered all their sin. Selah.”

1 Kings 8:30 – “Listen to the prayer of Your servant and of Your people Israel which they pray toward this place. Hear in heaven, Your dwelling place; hear and forgive.”

Psalm 65:3 – “Wickedness and guilt prevail against me; Yet as for our transgressions, You forgive them [removing them from Your sight].

Psalm 79:9 – “Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of Your name; Rescue us, forgive us our sins for Your name’s sake.”

Isaiah 6:7He touched my mouth with it and said, “Listen carefully, this has touched your lips; your wickedness [your sin, your injustice, your wrongdoing] is taken away and your sin atoned for and forgiven.”

Psalm 130:4 – “But there is forgiveness with You, That You may be feared and worshiped [with submissive wonder].

Proverbs 17:9 – “He who covers and forgives an offense seeks love, But he who repeats or gossips about a matter separates intimate friends.”

Psalm 86:5 – “For You, O Lord, are good, and ready to forgive [our sins, sending them away, completely letting them go forever and ever]; And abundant in lovingkindness and overflowing in mercy to all those who call upon You.

Group 4 – What The Bible Says About Forgiveness

Isaiah 44:21 – “[ God Forgives and Redeems ] “Remember [the foolishness of] these things, O Jacob And Israel, for you are My servant! I formed you, you are My servant; O Israel, you will not be forgotten by Me.”

Jeremiah 33:8 – I will cleanse them from all their wickedness (guilt) by which they have sinned against Me, and I will pardon (forgive) all their sins by which they rebelled against Me.

Isaiah 27:9 – “Therefore through this the wickedness [the sin, the injustice, the wrongdoing] of Jacob (Israel) will be atoned for and forgiven; And this will be the full price [that God requires] for taking away his sin: When Israel makes all the stones of the [pagan] altars like crushed chalk stones; When the Asherim and the incense altars will not stand.”

Isaiah 33:24 –And no inhabitant [of Zion] will say, “I am sick”; The people who dwell there will be forgiven their wickedness [their sin, their injustice, their wrongdoing].

Jeremiah 31:34 – “And each man will no longer teach his neighbor and his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me [through personal experience], from the least of them to the greatest,” says the Lord. “For I will forgive their wickedness, and I will no longer remember their sin.”

Ezekiel 16:63 – “so that you may remember [in detail] and be ashamed and never open your mouth again because of your humiliation, when I have forgiven you for all that you have done,” says the Lord God.

Jeremiah 5:7 – “Why should I [overlook these offenses and] forgive you? Your children have abandoned (rejected) Me And sworn [their oaths] by those who are not gods. When I had fed them until they were full [and bound them to Me by a promise], They committed [spiritual] adultery, Assembling in troops at the houses of prostitutes (idols).

Group 5 – What The Bible Says About Forgiveness

Amos 7:2And when the locusts had finished eating the plants of the land, then I said, “O Lord God, please forgive! How can Jacob stand, For he is so small [that he cannot endure this]?”

Daniel 9:19 – “O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and take action! Do not delay, for Your own sake, O my God, because Your city and Your people are called by Your name.”

Daniel 9:9 – “To the Lord our God belong mercy and lovingkindness and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against Him;

Jeremiah 36:3 – “It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the disaster which I plan to bring on them, so that each one will turn from his evil way, that I may forgive their wickedness and their sin.”

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Matthew 6:12 – “‘And forgive us our debts, as we have forgiven our debtors [letting go of both the wrong and the resentment].”

Micah 7:18 – “Who is a God like You, who forgives wickedness And passes over the rebellious acts of the remnant of His possession? He does not retain His anger forever, Because He [constantly] delights in mercy and lovingkindness.

Daniel 9:13 – “Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this tragedy has come on us. Yet we have not wholeheartedly begged for forgiveness and sought the favor of the Lord our God by turning from our wickedness and paying attention to and placing value in Your truth.”

Hosea 1:6 – “Then Gomer conceived again and gave birth to a daughter. And the Lord said to Hosea, “Name her Lo-Ruhamah (not shown mercy), for I will no longer have mercy on the house of Israel, that I would ever forgive them.”

Group 6 – What The Bible Says About Forgiveness

Matthew 6:15 – But if you do not forgive others [nurturing your hurt and anger with the result that it interferes with your relationship with God], then your Father will not forgive your trespasses.

Mark 1:4 – “John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins [that is, requiring a change of one’s old way of thinking, turning away from sin and seeking God and His righteousness].

Matthew 6:14 – “For if you forgive others their trespasses [their reckless and willful sins], your heavenly Father will also forgive you.

Matthew 5:4 – “Blessed [forgiven, refreshed by God’s grace] are those who mourn [over their sins and repent], for they will be comforted [when the burden of sin is lifted].”

Mark 2:5 – “When Jesus saw their [active] faith [springing from confidence in Him], He said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

Matthew 9:6 –But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority and the power on earth to forgive sins”—then He said to the paralytic, “Get up, pick up your stretcher and go home.”

Matthew 9:2 – “They brought to Him a man who was paralyzed, lying on a stretcher. Seeing their [active] faith [springing from confidence in Him], Jesus said to the paralytic, “Do not be afraid, son; your sins are forgiven [the penalty is paid, the guilt removed, and you are declared to be in right standing with God].

Mark 2:5 – “When Jesus saw their [active] faith [springing from confidence in Him], He said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.””

Matthew 9:5 – “For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven and the penalty paid,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? [Both are possible for God; both are impossible for man.]

Group 7 – What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

Matthew 12:31 – “Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy [every evil, abusive, injurious speaking, or indignity against sacred things] will be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the [Holy] Spirit will not be forgiven.

Matthew 12:32 – “Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit [by attributing the miracles done by Me to Satan] will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.”

Mark 2:7 – “Why does this man talk that way? He is blaspheming; who can forgive sins [remove guilt, nullify sin’s penalty, and assign righteousness] except God alone?

Matthew 9:7 –And he got up and went home [healed and forgiven].

Matthew 9:13 – “Go and learn what this [Scripture] means: ‘I desire compassion [for those in distress], and not [animal] sacrifice,’ for I did not come to call [to repentance] the [self-proclaimed] righteous [who see no need to change], but sinners [those who recognize their sin and actively seek forgiveness].

Mark 2:9 – “Which is easier, to say to the paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven’; or to say, ‘Get up, and pick up your mat and walk’?

Matthew 26:28 –for this is My blood of the [new and better] covenant, which [ratifies the agreement and] is being poured out for many [as a substitutionary atonement] for the forgiveness of sins.”

Mark 2:10 – “But so that you may know that the Son of Man has the authority and power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralyzed man,

Matthew 18:21 – “[ Forgiveness ] Then Peter came to Him and asked, “Lord, how many times will my brother sin against me and I forgive him and let it go? Up to seven times?

Matthew 18:35 – “My heavenly Father will also do the same to [every one of] you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart.

Group 8 – What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

Mark 11:25 – Whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him [drop the issue, let it go], so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions and wrongdoings [against Him and others].

Mark 3:28 – “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, all sins will be forgiven the sons of men, and all the abusive and blasphemous things they say;”

Luke 1:77 – To give His people the knowledge of salvation By the forgiveness of their sins,”

Mark 3:29 – “but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit and His power [by attributing the miracles done by Me to Satan] never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an everlasting sin [a sin which is unforgivable in this present age as well as in the age to come]

Mark 2:17 – When Jesus heard this, He said to them, “Those who are healthy have no need of a physician, but [only] those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners [who recognize their sin and humbly seek forgiveness].”

Luke 5:23 – “Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’?

Luke 4:18 – “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me (the Messiah), Because He has anointed Me to preach the good news to the poor. He has sent Me to announce release (pardon, forgiveness) to the captives, And recovery of sight to the blind, To set free those who are oppressed (downtrodden, bruised, crushed by tragedy),”

Mark 14:24 –And He said to them, “This is My blood of the [new] covenant, [My blood] which is being poured out for many [for the forgiveness of sins].

Luke 3:3 –And he went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sin;

Group 9 – What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

Luke 7:47 – “Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little.

Luke 7:48 – “Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

John 20:23 – If you forgive the sins of anyone they are forgiven [because of their faith]; if you retain the sins of anyone, they are retained [and remain unforgiven because of their unbelief].

Luke 5:24 – “But, in order that you may know that the Son of Man (the Messiah) has authority and power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralyzed man, “I say to you, get up, pick up your stretcher and go home.”

Luke 5:20 –When Jesus saw their [active] faith [springing from confidence in Him], He said, “Man, your sins are forgiven.”

Mark 11:26 –[But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your transgressions.”]

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Luke 11:4 – ‘And forgive us our sins, For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us [who has offended or wronged us]. And lead us not into temptation [but rescue us from evil].’”

Luke 12:10 –And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit [that is, whoever intentionally discredits the Holy Spirit by attributing the authenticating miracles done by Me to Satan], it will not be forgiven him [for him there is no forgiveness].”

Acts 2:38 – “And Peter said to them, “Repent [change your old way of thinking, turn from your sinful ways, accept and follow Jesus as the Messiah] and be baptized, each of you, in the name of Jesus Christ because of the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Group 10 – What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

Luke 18:14 – “I tell you, this man went to his home justified [forgiven of the guilt of sin and placed in right standing with God] rather than the other man; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself [forsaking self-righteous pride] will be exalted.”

Luke 23:34 – “And Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” And they cast lots, dividing His clothes among themselves.”

Acts 5:31 – “God exalted Him to His right hand as Prince and Savior and Deliverer, in order to grant repentance to Israel, and [to grant] forgiveness of sins.

Luke 17:3 – “Pay attention and always be on guard [looking out for one another]! If your brother sins and disregards God’s precepts, solemnly warn him; and if he repents and changes, forgive him.”

Luke 17:4 – “Even if he sins against you seven times a day, and returns to you seven times and says, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him [that is, give up resentment and consider the offense recalled and annulled].

Romans 4:7 –Blessed and happy and favored are those whose lawless acts have been forgiven, And whose sins have been covered up and completely buried.”

Acts 10:43 – “All the prophets testify about Him, that through His name everyone who believes in Him [whoever trusts in and relies on Him, accepting Him as Savior and Messiah] receives forgiveness of sins.

Luke 23:34 – “And Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” And they cast lots, dividing His clothes among themselves.

Luke 24:47 – “and that repentance [necessary] for forgiveness of sins would be preached in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.”

Acts 8:22 – “So repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, this thought of your heart may be forgiven you.

Group 11 – What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

2 Corinthians 2:10 –If you forgive anyone anything, I too forgive [that one]; and what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, has been for your sake in the presence of [and with the approval of] Christ,

Romans 4:7 – “Blessed and happy and favored are those whose lawless acts have been forgiven, And whose sins have been covered up and completely buried.”

2 Corinthians 2:7 – “so instead [of further rebuke, now] you should rather [graciously] forgive and comfort and encourage him, to keep him from being overwhelmed by excessive sorrow.”

Acts 26:18 – to open their [spiritual] eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness and release from their sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified (set apart, made holy) by faith in Me.’

Colossians 1:14 – “in whom we have redemption [because of His sacrifice, resulting in] the forgiveness of our sins [and the cancellation of sins’ penalty].

Ephesians 1:7 – “In Him we have redemption [that is, our deliverance and salvation] through His blood, [which paid the penalty for our sin and resulted in] the forgiveness and complete pardon of our sin, in accordance with the riches of His grace.

Colossians 2:13 – When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh (worldliness, manner of life), God made you alive together with Christ, having [freely] forgiven us all our sins,

Colossians 3:13 – “bearing graciously with one another, and willingly forgiving each other if one has a cause for complaint against another; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so should you forgive.

Group 12 – What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness?

1 John 2:12 – I am writing to you, little children (believers, dear ones), because your sins have been forgiven for His name’s sake [you have been pardoned and released from spiritual debt through His name because you have confessed His name, believing in Him as Savior].

James 5:15 – “and the prayer of faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.”

Hebrews 9:22 –In fact under the Law almost everything is cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness [neither release from sin and its guilt, nor cancellation of the merited punishment].

Hebrews 10:18 – “Now where there is [absolute] forgiveness and complete cancellation of the penalty of these things, there is no longer any offering [to be made to atone] for sin.”

1 John 5:17 – “All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death [one can repent of it and be forgiven].

1 John 1:9 – “If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just [true to His own nature and promises], and will forgive our sins and cleanse us continually from all unrighteousness [our wrongdoing, everything not in conformity with His will and purpose].”

Matthew 6:14-15 – “For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses”

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