The Bible records a fascinating discussion between Simon and the Christ. The Scriptures read, “Peter asked, ‘Lord, when someone has sinned against me, how many times ought I forgive him? Once? Twice? As many as seven times?’ Jesus replies, ‘You must forgive not seven times, but seventy times seven'” (Matthew 18: 21-22, The Voice).

The Voice commentators write, “The response of Jesus is like the story of Lamech in Genesis. He was Adam and Eve’s great-great-great-great grandson who had two wives. One day he said to his wives, ‘Wives of Lamech, I need to tell you something! I killed a man who struck me. Surely Lamech must be avenged seventy-seven times.’ In the new Kingdom of forgiveness, we reverse and invert Lamech’s plan. As Christians, we should forgive others’ transgressions more readily than the world would avenge them” (261).

Is that my response? Am I as quick to give up my right to retaliate as others are at demanding it?


One thought on “Seventy

  1. Well, Jesus didn't say how long after we had to forgive. I mean this doesn't necessarily leave out the opportunity to forgive somebody -after we've beaten them up.

    Though maybe we should be quicker to forgive then it takes to get somebody into a choke hold.

    However, it takes a greater person than me (which admittedly is everybody else in the world, except for that one guy who kicks puppies -I am still cooler than him) to quickly forgive after being 'wronged.'

    The self-control needed not to lash out, let alone to forgive is hard. Even if you love the other person.


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