Bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.
— COLOSSIANS 3:13 —
Samuel Garcia: Berea Seminary | Spain
The ability to bear with, and forgive, others is almost extinct in our society. Pride and personal vainglory float just like oil in water. What is really alarming is that this lifestyle is influencing the church, and many believers are not seeing and following Christ as the supreme example of humbleness and forgiveness. The main essence of Christianity is the forgiveness of our sins, as Christ bore the punishment for them on the cross. If Christ forgave you, what will you then do with your brethren in Christ? Paul exhorts us to exemplify this forgiveness in our attitude toward others. “Bearing with” and “forgiving” are two different actions that must mark the life of the believer, who according to Colossians 3:12 has “put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” Therefore, Paul doesn’t make forgiving optional. He says that we must have Christ’s supreme example always in mind in our fellowship with our brethren in Christ. In other words, only a regenerated believer, clothed in Christ, is able to bear and forgive in the manner of Christ. Consider your ability to bear and forgive. Don’t embrace the selfish influence of this Christless world. The unavoidable question is: How did Christ forgive you? He forgave all your sins, sins that made reconciliation with God impossible, and He did it in the most humiliating way: the just dying for the unjust, to make you a child of God. If Christ forgave you, what will you then do with your brethren in Christ?