No Limit to Forgiveness, for forgiveness must be more than complete
By REV. FR. SAMUEL FREDERICK
Sirach 27:30 – 28:9, Rom. 14:7-9, Mt. 18: 21-35. On this Twenty Fourth in Ordinary Time Year A, the Church invites us to embrace forgiveness of all who hurts us and our forgiveness must be complete without conditions or reservations. Today’s first reading is a call to be willing to forgive those who have harmed us, for the way we treat others should reflect the way God treats us. Those who are unforgiving are being selfish and they will have to pay a heavy price for their unwillingness to forgive. For God will not be overly forgiving of those who do not forgive others. As part of his final summary in his letter to the Romans, Paul reminds them that they are not really their own. They belong to the Lord Jesus, they should live as people of God and they should die as people of God.y
Bfailing to forgive, we hurt ourselves more than anyone else. Surely, this is what Jesus had in mind in today’s Gospel parable. Peter wants to justify himself as far as his being a good and forgiving person. He asked Jesus if extending forgiveness to someone who has hurt him seven times is sufficient. It was the Jewish thought that forgiveness should be done three times. For Peter to double the three and add one is to say that Peter is more perfect. Jesus responds in other words by saying: “Forgiving another must be more than complete. One must be willing to forget about the hurt and think about the other person more than oneself.” Thus, Jesus raises it to an even more “perfect” or more “complete” number. For an unforgiving spirit creates a prison of its own. It builds up walls of bitterness and resentment and there is no escape until we come to forgive.
May the Lord be with us always in our journey of faith and grant us a forgiving heart! Amen!! Happy Sunday!!!