Some thoughts from our recent Sunday School Lesson:
It is fair to say that over the years there has been no greater hindrance to the Lord's work than Christian people who bicker and fight among themselves. Such behavior disrupts the fellowship of Christians and presents a bad example to the lost.
Lost people often look at the fights among church members and simply walk away in disgust. Saved people who are outside the fellowship of a New Testament church see little reason to join a group of bickering, sniping, backbiting Baptists. When we misbehave, we imagine that we are defending our rights while we are really placing a stumbling block in the path of a weaker brother.
The simple answer would be for all of God's children to behave as if they knew that Jesus was watching their every action and hearing their every word. Of course, He truly is, but we are seldom aware of this spiritual scrutiny. This is why we need to learn how to live with each other and make the same things important to us that are important to Jesus.
God forgives us ONLY when we seek forgiveness from Him. God does not just issue a blanket forgiveness for every sin that has ever been committed. God also forgives us when we are willing to forgive others, Matthew 6:14,15
An unforgiving spirit will eventually turn into a sour soul. Many do not make the connection, but when you find a child of God who is sour, critical and mean spirited, you have found a person who will not forgive others. The longer we hold onto a grudge, the more bitter we become. That is why we should not even let the sun go down on our wrath.
If God has forgiven you, then by His grace, you can forgive others.