Forgive seventy times seven
Matthew 18:21 -
Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
This question by Peter is not something which Peter alone had on his mind; this question is almost on everyone's mind, one moment or other.
When Peter asked Jesus if he should forgive seven times, Jesus answered with seventy times seven, they were not talking of the actual times (although Peter at that moment may have not known). When Jesus answered He did not tell him how many times but how to.
In the Bible the number seven is commonly used and has a very special place because it is connected to the spirit. God's Spirit is symbolized in the Tabernacle by the candlestick with the seven branches. Isaiah goes on to name the seven Spirits of the Lord in Isaiah 11:2.
God's Spirit is one but when The Son humbled Himself so also did the Spirit of God because He being God and Holy, and in His former glory man would not be able to receive Him nor also come before Him, for He is part of the God the Son as much as He is part of the Father God.
The Lord had taught me how His image is in the physical body of man in the external and internal design and how one can know God by understanding man. The Lord also taught me about the soul or inner-man and how it too has a form as given in the Word. I have been taught some things about the spirit of man but that is hardly anything and have to learn a lot in that area. But I am very sure like God's Spirit human spirit too has a design; for God's Spirit although written as breathe is a being by Himself.
When Peter said should we forgive will all our spirit Jesus opened a great understanding with His answer seventy time seven.
Understand if I write something in a book and I shut that book does it mean the writing does not exist? When I do not see it over long period I may even forget it exist but one day when I open that book and come to that page I will see what I have written and remember the events connected to it.
Our heart (mind) is like a notebook and what we hear, see, smell, touch or things that happen in our life are written in on this book (also what we speak and do are also written in the records of our hearts). We may not keep those pages open but some time in our lives we suddenly come to those pages and relive or revive them. Man does not have the eraser to erase what is written in this book. When man forgives he just turns the page and assumes it does not exist. Man does not have the ability to really forgive. Since God alone has the eraser, so man has to use God's help to get what is written in his heart to be erased.
When Jesus told Peter seventy times seven, He told Peter not by your spirit but by the Spirit of God should one forgive. That is why Jesus gave us the authority to forgive only after He gave us His Spirit.
When we forgive another let us not turn the page and say we have forgiven. Let us learn to pray for that person and ask the Lord's forgiveness for that person for He alone has the eraser that can truly erase what is written. When we do this then we will never revive that which has passed and be affected by it.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, ever since man has been trapped in this flesh due to sin there is hardly much man can do in spirit. Therefore Lord You gave us your Spirit so that by your Spirit the spirit-man may be set free from the flesh hold. Lord, help us not to just superficially forgive people by vain words or by turning the pages in our heart, but Lord teach us to pray for the person and using the help of your Spirit truly forgive people...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference Scriptures ]
21 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.
31 And thou shalt make a candlestick of pure gold: of beaten work shall the candlestick be made: his shaft, and his branches, his bowls, his knops, and his flowers, shall be of the same.
32 And six branches shall come out of the sides of it; three branches of the candlestick out of the one side, and three branches of the candlestick out of the other side:
33 And thou shalt hang up the vail under the taches, that thou mayest bring in thither within the vail the ark of the testimony: and the vail shall divide unto you between the holy place and the most holy.
34 And thou shalt put the mercy seat upon the ark of the testimony in the most holy place.
35 And thou shalt set the table without the vail, and the candlestick over against the table on the side of the tabernacle toward the south: and thou shalt put the table on the north side.
Isaiah 11:2 - And the spirit of the LORD  shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom  and understanding , the spirit of counsel  and might , the spirit of knowledge  and of the fear of the LORD ;
22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Spirit:
23 whose soever sins ye forgive, they are forgiven unto them; whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.
7 Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?
8 And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts?
9 Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?
10 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,)
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