Easter reminds us of the price of forgiveness. For us to be forgiven meant Jesus had to die on the cross for our sins. Yet as we see the injustice, scheming and hatred which led to His death, His response reminds us that God’s way involves the narrow path of forgiveness. Even as He hung on the cross, He spoke of forgiveness. (Luke 23:24) Peter tells us, ‘When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.’ (1 Pet 2:23)
When we embrace forgiveness, we reflect the heart of God. In the prayer Jesus taught His disciples, we are taught to pray, ‘forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.’ (Matt 6:12) We are also reminded that ‘if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.’ (Matt 6:14) There really is no way to progress in the Christian life if we don’t embrace forgiveness, but Easter is our ultimate reason for forgiving. When we understand how much we have been forgiven, forgiving is the natural response.