“And when you stand to pray, if you hold anything against another, forgive it, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your trespasses as well.” ( Mark 11:25)
If we believe there’s any good in holding grudge against another, then maybe we should experience what it’s like to have others hold their grudges against us.
What Christ said in Mark 11:25 seem to originate from one of the two commandments he heralded, specifically, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
In giving those instructions to the disciples, Christ was teaching them how, if anything, they could benefit from the law.
Yet Christ knows fair and well that mankind is incapable of forgiving one another without any impure motive. Peter asked Christ, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” (Matthew 18:21)
I probably would ask the same. “How do you continuously forgive someone who keep causing you the same pain over and over again?” Maybe this question would have summed up Peter’s frustration with letting others off the hook for how they’ve wronged him. The flesh, the natural way of understanding things, always wants revenge. The Mosaic law itself teaches it and mandates it. Even if you were to find one drop of mercy from the Mosaic law, it would seem to be one-sided and temporary, like the regulations around the city of refuge. And only God knows how weak men are to even abide by the instructions surrounding the purpose for the city of refuge found in Leviticus.
Naturally, Christ was asking the disciples, “Do you think it helps you in any manner when others hate you, detest you, wish you were dead because you have done wrong to them?” And if the answer is ‘No’, then what follows up is, “why do you then maintain your hatred toward those who have wronged you? What do you benefit from keeping a record of everyone who has wronged you in one way or another? What do you benefit from reflecting on the hurts others have caused you?”
It just seems unfair for Christ to tell those who were with him to love and pray for their enemies. Their whole idea and thought was that Christ was going to crush their enemies. They were right in thinking such. But they were wrong in their thoughts of how it was going to be done.
Those whom we consider to be our enemies, Christ changed our perspectives of them and then commanded us to love and pray for them. Then he revealed our true enemy, the devil.
God destroyed our enemies by regenerating our hearts so that we can love and ask God for mercy for even those who had believed to be our enemies.
God cleaned our vision so that we see them as God sees them: loved by God in Christ by the cross.
“God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. ” (2 Corinthians 5:19)
The Mosaic law counts people’s sins against them. God counts people’s sins against Christ Jesus. What the Mosaic law could not do, God did because God is merciful and the law is not. God can love and God does love. The Mosaic law can’t and therefore doesn’t. God can give hope and does give hope. The Mosaic law can’t, doesn’t and couldn’t care any less of who you are or where you’re from. The difference, apparently, is that the law leads to death, and God leads to Himself, eternal life in Christ Jesus.
What man couldn’t do, what the law couldn’t do, God did in Christ Jesus. God saved us by His mercy and declared us His children by love in Christ.