The Bible gives several reasons why we should forgive people who wronged us:
1. Because the measure that we use to measure will be measured to us.
“Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again” (Luke 6:37-38).
Jesus compared judging with giving, why is that? Because often in judging, we use the highest measure. We verdict slightest mistake with the highest judgment. But when we give, we use the lowest measure as possible. We just want to give a little of what we’ve got.
Jesus warned: Remember! The measure that we use to measure will be measured to us. If we judge with the highest measure, then God will also judge us with the highest measure. If we give with the lowest measure, God will give us the lowest measure.
If we remember that, then we will use the lowest measure to judge and instead use the highest measure to give. When there is a person who do wrong, we are not to judge but to release forgiveness, then God will not judge us if we are guilty, but will forgive us. Conversely, when there is an opportunity to give to God’s project and we give as much as possible, then God will bless us abundantly.
2. Because people often make mistakes in their ignorance.
Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots. (Luke 23:34)
Do you realize that you often were offended by the action of a person whereas that person himself do not realize that his action has offended you? Then you got bitter, disappointed and angry by yourself without that person knowing. All that conflicts occured within our own mind and tortured us. Isn’t that a stupid act? So rather than hurt on our own, is better that we forgive those who wronged us or guilty but “do not” know it.
3. Because bitterness, anger and disappointment that we experience are stemmed from not forgiving.
Genesis 37 told us how Joseph had a dream that made him excited and he excitedly told his dream to his brothers. Without his realizing, his burning “spirit” had offended and hurt his brothers. That’s why when Joseph told his dream, his brothers grew to hate him. Joseph’s brothers got offended and bitter on their own without Joseph’s knowing.
And as one would expect, day by day they became more hateful to see Joseph’s “act” that excited. They became angry and disappointed. Why? Because all this time they didn’t want to forgive Joseph that was “not guilty” to them. They became more bitter and hateful until they intended to kill Joseph.
People who keep hatred and do not want to release forgiveness are often not able to think straight because all that are inside of them is hatred.
4. Because any evil committed by people against us can be transformed by God into good if we respond it accurately.
Conversely, when Joseph was wronged by his brothers, he did not immediately release forgiveness and did not keep hatred, why is that? Because Joseph believed, all the evil which were committed to us by other people can be transformed by God into good to all if we respond it accurately.
And when Joseph’s brethren saw that their father was dead, they said, Joseph will peradventure hate us, and will certainly requite us all the evil which we did unto him. And they sent a messenger unto Joseph, saying, Thy father did command before he died, saying, So shall ye say unto Joseph, Forgive, I pray thee now, the trespass of thy brethren, and their sin; for they did unto thee evil: and now, we pray thee, forgive the trespass of the servants of the God of thy father. And Joseph wept when they spake unto him. And his brethren also went and fell down before his face; and they said, Behold, we be thy servants. And Joseph said unto them, Fear not: for am I in the place of God? But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive (Genesis 50:15-20).
Those are reasons why we should forgive people who wronged us.
Read also: The Principles of Forgiveness We Need to Live on.