We're not asked not to hate, though many of us grow up believing that it is unchristian to hate. We're not asked not to be angry either. 

What we are asked, demanded of, beseeched to do, is to forgive. 

In a strange kind of way, every time we pray the Lord's Prayer we are put under judgement. 

We pray 

Forgive us our sins, 
as we forgive those 
who sin against us. 

Forgive us our trespasses, our faults, our carelessnesses, and our wickednesses, 
in exactly the same way, according to the same measure, by the same rules 
as we apply to those who have hurt, trespassed, ignored, spurned or otherwise injured us. 

Now that could be a blessing or a curse, however you look at it, couldn't it ? And we're very adept - as human beings - at disguising our lack of forgiveness as something else. Call it tough love maybe - then ask yourself if you yourself would make the most of the tough love. Call it God's hatred of sin maybe and hope like the blazes that he doesn't apply it to you ..

Sometimes I think that the unforgiveable sin is unforgiveness
for it makes it impossible to let anything else in..


A parable for good people:

The Gospel of Saint Luke: 
Chapter Sixteen.

1 And he said also unto his disciples, There was a certain rich man, which had a steward; and the same was accused unto him that he had wasted his goods.
2 And he called him, and said unto him, How is it that I hear this of thee? give an account of thy stewardship; for thou mayest be no longer steward.
3 Then the steward said within himself, What shall I do? for my lord taketh away from me the stewardship: I cannot dig; to beg I am ashamed.
4 I am resolved what to do, that, when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.
5 So he called every one of his lord's debtors [unto him], and said unto the first, How much owest thou unto my lord?
6 And he said, An hundred measures of oil. And he said unto him, Take thy bill, and sit down quickly, and write fifty.
7 Then said he to another, And how much owest thou? And he said, An hundred measures of wheat. And he said unto him, Take thy bill, and write fourscore.
8 And the lord commended the {unjust steward}, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.
9 And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the mammon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail, they may receive you into everlasting habitations.
10 He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.
11 If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true [riches]?
12 And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own?
13 No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
There was a time in my life when the best I could do was to hold myself and cry: "Help me to want - to want to forgive - Lord, for I cannot do it." Do the forgiving for me, for I cannot. 
Piece of that pain and that debt are still falling off - almost thirty years later. All I have been able to do is to keep halving it, every time the memory returns. 
Sometimes I wonder - Is it enough, Lord, is it enough? 
and I hope that when I come to judgement my dear Lord does not find it so hard to forgive me as I find it to forgive them..


Seventy times Seven !! 
Sweet Jesus, 490 times, and we haven't resisted temptation to the point of shedding blood yet. 

For some reason people find it hard to wrap their heads around this parable. Come to that I do think the gospel writer found it hard, for he mentions that the pharisees were so covertous that they couldn't like this story. I think the point is rather that the pharisees were good people. How could they praise a wastral who fiddled his master's accounts? Well - we can't. But lets hang on for a moment and look at this parable from another angle. 
      The first thing is that the Steward was wasting someone elses goods. Which every single one of us has done, and does do. Make this then, the debt. The sin. It is so seldom anyway - against the people that we think it is against, isn't it?
And we, like the steward are called to account. We have life, breath, intellegence, love - and what have we done with it ? 
      What the steward then does is to realise that what he has held so dishonestly was really the debt to the master in the first place not to him. Uhoh. He used his masters treasure and his master's debt as his own. 
      So it is for us. So much we hold dearly to our hearts with such resentment, so many of the heartlessnessess, the hurts - the injustices which we accept as direct blows to ourself are not hurts offered to us. First or last.. Dear me no - they hurt first those who do them. That injustice makes the doer unjust - that cruelty makes the doer cruel. 
What a victory if it makes us cruel too, And what a blow to the Lord of Love if such debts build and grow. For whatever good reason, for whatever purpose. How such things lock us into the past, so that we cannot put out our hands to mend the present, for their bondange. It is indeed a debt, and it becomes larger and larger and more all consuming. 
    Think about it next time you are in pain. Think about it next time you think - "let them come to me first" - For we cannot serve two masters. Either we serve the God of 'You owe me' or we serve the God who halves our debt, over and over again. You cannot, I'm very much afraid, serve God, and the God of debt and ownership. 

It is not my guilt, it is not my pain, to do what I like with. It is not my right.

and I say to you: 
bless those who curse you, 
pray for those who despitefully use you.

If you have something against your brother, 
go talk to him. 
If he doesn't listen. 
Take a witness. 

and if you are on your way to the temple with your offering and remember that your brother has ought against you - drop it right there, and make haste..

How many times must I forgive Lord ? 
Seven times ? 

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