Do I have to forgive my friends when they hurt me?

Here's the answer:

It’s always right to forgive.

Believe it or not, an unforgiving spirit will make you sadder. And when you don’t forgive, you may want to get even, which will make things worse. When you choose to forgive those who hurt you, you actually free yourself from the bitterness and anger that could build up inside. Forgiveness means that you won’t hold a friend’s hurtful words or actions against them anymore, and now you can simply treat them as though they hadn’t done it. But restoring the friendship to where it was before may take a while longer. That’s okay!

Jesus paid with His very life when He died on the cross so God could freely forgive us. God wants those who believe in Him to love others as He loves them. So He tells His followers "Forgive people when they sin against you. If you do, your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive people their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins" (Matthew 6:14–15). This doesn’t mean you lose your salvation if you don’t forgive other people. But your fellowship with God will be broken if you don’t forgive others.

God promises, "If we admit that we have sinned, He will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure" (1 John 1:9). The Bible also tells us that "He has removed our [sins] from us as far as the east is from the west" (Psalm 103:12). Wow! Since God has done that for us, what a good reason to forgive your friends when they hurt you!

Bible Truth

"Be kind and tender to one another. Forgive each other, just as God forgave you because of what Christ has done" (Ephesians 4:32).

"Put up with each other. Forgive the things you are holding against one another. Forgive, just as the Lord forgave you" (Colossians 3:13).