What Does the Bible Say About Unforgiveness?

The Bible is a wealth of knowledge and instruction on how to lead a life that pleases God. It instructs us on the value of forgiveness, among other things. Our relationships, mental health, and even our spiritual lives can all suffer from unforgiveness. In this article, we’ll look at what the Bible says about forgiving others and why doing so is crucial if we want to have lasting peace and pleasure in our lives.

Bible Verses About Unforgiveness

1. Matthew 6:14-15: “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” This verse emphasizes the importance of forgiveness in our lives and how it is essential to receive God’s forgiveness as well. It reminds us that we must be willing to extend grace and mercy to those who have wronged us for us to experience true freedom from guilt and shame.

2. Colossians 3:13: “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” This verse encourages believers to practice patience with one another while forgiving any grievances that may arise between them, just as Christ has forgiven us all our sins through His death on the cross. 

3. Ephesians 4:32: “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” This verse highlights the importance of being kindhearted towards others even when they have wronged us by reminding us that we too were once forgiven by God for our transgressions so we should extend this same grace to others who need it most. 

4 . Luke 17:3-4: “So watch yourselves! If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them.” Here Jesus teaches his followers about how important it is for Christians to confront those who have wronged them but also offer forgiveness after repentance has been made so that reconciliation can take place between two parties involved in a dispute or disagreement. 

5 . Matthew 18:21-22: “Then Peter came up and said to him [Jesus], ‘Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?’ Jesus said unto him, ‘I say not unto thee until seven times; but until seventy times seven.'” In this passage, Jesus emphasizes the importance of offering unconditional love even when someone continues making mistakes over time by teaching Peter that he should always be ready to offer forgiveness no matter what number of offenses are committed against him or her. 

6. Mark 11:25: “And as you stand praying if you have anything against anybody, forgive them so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” This verse serves as a reminder of the need to forgive others even as we pray to God and beg Him to provide us the grace and mercy we so desperately need in our own lives.

7. Romans 12:19: “Do not seek revenge, my friends, but allow space for God’s anger, for it is written that He alone is deserving of vengeance.” This verse teaches us that it is not our place to exact vengeance on those who have wronged us but rather to leave it to the Lord, who is the only one who can judge rightfully based on his righteousness and spiritual authority over all things.

8. James 2:13: Mercy wins over judgment. This verse encourages believers to practice compassionate love rather than focusing on the details of wrongs done by others, which will ultimately lead to far greater peace and harmony among people than any form of punishment or retribution could ever achieve.

9. Hebrews 10:30: “For we know him who declared, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay,” and again, “The Lords shall judge the peoples.” Here the writer reminds worshippers of the majesty and power of the Lord as they seek His guidance in matters of justice and submission to his sovereignty over all things, including the ability to administer punishment correctly when necessary without falling into a pattern of unforgiveness or resentment towards those who may deserve it the most,

10. Proverbs 19:11: “A person’s understanding provides him patience; it is a credit to bear up amid hardships,” In this passage, King Solomon talks about how important it is to be patient in life, especially when things are hard and you want to give up or act quickly out of anger or frustration instead of giving the other person the benefit of the doubt, which will lead to much more peaceful results in the long run.

How Unforgiveness Can Lead to Spiritual Death: What the Bible Says

According to the Bible, being unforgiving might result in spiritual death. But if you don’t pardon other people’s faults, your Father won’t pardon yours, Jesus warns in Matthew 6:15. This text makes it quite apparent that being ungracious is a sin with negative ramifications for our relationship with God. Because of our unforgiveness, we are unable to forgive others or maintain a positive connection with God.

The Bible also forbids us from keeping resentment in our hearts (Hebrews 12:15). Bitterness is a feeling that frequently goes hand in hand with being unable to forgive and can eventually make us spiritually dead. Because of the anger and resentment, we feel toward them, when we are bitter toward someone else, we are unable to receive love or grace from them or even from ourselves. This lack of love causes spiritual death because it hinders us from finding genuine happiness in life, which is only possible via loving connections with other people and God.

The Bible instructs us to “get rid of every bitterness, fury, and anger” in Ephesians 4:31–32.

Be empathetic and nice to one another. These verses serve as a reminder that harboring grudges only serve to prolong our suffering by preventing us from letting go of them and allowing ourselves to move on to more fulfilling relationships with those around us, including God.

The Bible makes it abundantly clear that unforgiveness can result in spiritual death because it prevents us from receiving forgiveness from God, keeps us from experiencing true joy, causes us to harbor bitterness in our hearts, and prevents us from forming healthier relationships with others, including God. Because of this, it is crucial for Christians everywhere to demonstrate forgiveness to enjoy the fullness of life that comes from a strong connection with Christ Jesus!

The Power of Forgiveness to Overcome Unforgiveness: Biblical Examples

We may defeat unforgiveness by using the strong instrument of forgiveness. There are several instances in the Bible of how forgiveness has helped people mend broken relationships and move on. We’ll look at a few of these biblical instances in this post and talk about how they might clarify the importance of forgiveness in overcoming unforgiveness.

The first illustration comes from Genesis 37–50’s account of Joseph. When Joseph became the king of Egypt, he was able to show kindness to his brothers, who had sold him into slavery, and forgive them for their treachery. This act of forgiveness illustrates how effective it can be when someone decides not to hang onto resentment or hatred but instead extends grace and compassion to those who have harmed them.

In Luke 15:11–32, Jesus uses the story of the Prodigal Son as another illustration. In this tale, a father shows unwavering love and acceptance toward his son despite everything he has done to offend him, even after such a severe betrayal. This teaches us that, regardless of what they have done or said to us if we choose to forgive someone, God’s compassion and mercy may still be able to mend our relationship with them.

The parable of the unforgiving servant, who refuses to forgive another servant’s debt despite having been greatly pardoned by his master himself, is found in Matthew 18:21–35. (God). This serves as a reminder that if we are hesitant to show others compassion and mercy, God might not do the same for us. This emphasizes the need to practice forgiveness whenever possible to prevent impeding our spiritual development or progress within our journey of faith with Him.

These three examples show how important it is to forgive others to overcome our lack of forgiveness. This lets us find peace within ourselves and fix broken relationships with people we truly care about, even if they have hurt us in the past.

Understanding God’s Mercy and Grace about Unforgiveness: A Biblical Perspective

The idea of compassion and grace is a major topic in the Bible, and God’s mercy and grace are given to everyone who asks for them. These two ideas are crucial to comprehending how we might let go of past wrongdoings and wounds about unforgiveness. In this article, we will look at what the Bible says about God’s mercy and grace regarding unforgiveness, as well as how we can use these things as therapeutic tools.

Jesus relates a parable in Matthew 18:21–35 about a king who, in response to his servant’s pleading for forgiveness, pardons him of a hefty debt. The king then pardons him despite his lack of regret or contrition. This narrative demonstrates the strength of God’s kindness because it shows that He is ready to pardon us even though we didn’t earn it or want it. This tale also demonstrates how we should model our capacity for forgiveness after God’s—regardless of what has been done to us, if someone asks for our forgiveness, we should freely give it without expecting anything in return.

Additionally, God provides His love to people who have been wounded by the deeds or words of others. “Be kind and sympathetic to one another, forgiving one another as God forgave you in Christ,” Ephesians 4:32 instructs. Paul points out that even though we may feel justified in harboring resentment or hatred toward someone else for their injustice toward us, the best course of action is to act with love and compassion instead, just as Christ did when He gave His life on the cross to atone for all of our sins (John 3:16).

Finally, 1 John 1:9 states that if we confess our faults, God is trustworthy and righteous and will pardon us. This passage underscores the value of confession—acknowledging wrongdoings—as well as the mercy of God, who extends His love and forgiveness to us without holding us to a standard of perfection instead. He does this despite past transgressions.

In conclusion, a Christian’s ability to respond correctly in challenging circumstances involving harmful words or deeds from others depends much on their knowledge of God’s mercy and love concerning unforgiveness. Christians may find that the best way to love those around them and still set healthy boundaries is to realize that everyone deserves a second chance, no matter what mistakes they’ve made in the past, just like Jesus showed by dying on the cross.

Examining Jesus’ Teachings on Unforgiveness and Its Impact on Our Lives

Jesus’ proclamations against unforgiveness have had a significant influence on our lives. In the Bible, Jesus emphasizes forgiveness as a crucial component of leading a life that is pleasing to God. The Bible emphasizes forgiveness as a crucial component of leading a life that is pleasing to God. To be at peace with God and live in harmony with one another, Jesus emphasizes the significance of forgiving both others and ourselves.

“If you forgive other people when they transgress against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you,” Jesus says in Matthew 6:14–15. However, your father won’t pardon your crimes if you don’t pardon others for their transgressions. It is quite obvious from this chapter that we must forgive others to get forgiveness from God. It also means that we are obstructing our road to peace with God by not forgiving those who have harmed us.

Not forgiving people have had negative consequences throughout history and even today. As opposed to bringing people and groups closer together as Christ intended for his disciples, unforgiveness breeds bitterness, which can drive people apart (John 13:34). Additionally, being unforgiving can trap us in vicious cycles of bitterness and rage that keep us from truly finding joy and serenity (Ephesians 4:31–32).

We can achieve more freedom in both our internal and interpersonal relationships by adhering to Jesus’ teachings on unforgiveness. We discover how crucial it is to show love and kindness to people who have wronged us to bring about both sides’ recovery (Matthew 18:21–22). By forgiving others, regardless of their previous deeds or views about themselves or others, we can see the humanity in all individuals, and we go a step closer to understanding what Jesus meant when He stated, “Love your enemies” (Luke 6:27). (Romans 12:17-19).

Lastly, Jesus’s teachings on forgiveness show Christians how to act in hard situations where two people disagree, whether it’s on a small scale, like racial injustice or political unrest, or on a larger scale, like in relationships with other people. By adhering to these values, we create space for development, healing, and peacemaking.

Exploring the Consequences of Refusing to Forgive Others According to Scripture

The Bible makes it quite clear that failing to forgive people can have negative effects. Jesus taught us in the book of Matthew that our Heavenly Father will not pardon us if we do not pardon those who have harmed us (Matthew 6:15). This indicates that God withholds His kindness and mercy from us when we refuse to show them to others.

In addition to this spiritual impact, not forgiving someone can have negative bodily and mental effects. Refusing to forgive can result in bitterness and resentment, which can have negative effects like depression or anxiety. As a result of the stress it puts on our bodies, it can also result in bodily problems like headaches or stomachaches. Also, holding on to grudges keeps people from moving on with their lives because they can’t stop thinking about the past and can’t focus on the present.

Last but not least, unwillingness to forgive has social repercussions as well; it frequently causes people to become socially isolated since they find it difficult or impossible to trust others after being wronged by a loved one. They have trouble making deep connections with other people, which could be good for their mental health and general well-being.

To prevent these unfavorable effects of withholding forgiveness from others, Christians must keep in mind what Jesus taught about forgiveness. We must endeavor to show grace to others in the same way that God shows us grace every day (Ephesians 4:32).


In conclusion, the Bible makes it quite plain that holding grudges is a sin that is to be avoided at all costs. It instructs us to be merciful to others as God has been merciful to us. Bitterness, resentment, and rage can develop as a result of unforgiveness, harming relationships and the soul. To live a life of peace and pleasure according to God’s plan, we must make an effort to forgive those who have harmed us.