But if ye do not forgive
Freely and fully, such as have trespassed against you, remit the debts they owe, and pass by the offences and injuries done you, and put up with every affront and indignity:
neither will your heavenly Father forgive your trespasses;
that is, such persons do not appear to have any true, or right notions of forgiveness; nor is there any evidence that their hearts are duly affected, or truly impressed with a sense of it; nor can they, upon their own principles and conduct, expect it: not but that to whomsoever God stands in the relation of a Father, and they are his children by adopting grace; these he pities and pardons, Christ's sake; the same covenant which contains the blessing of adoption, provides for pardoning mercy, and a non-remembrance of sin; the same persons that are predestinated to the adoption of children by Christ, and whom he has redeemed, that they might receive it, have the forgiveness of their sins, according to the riches of God's grace; for redemption and forgiveness of sins go together; and as many as are the children of God by faith in Christ, by the same faith receive the remission of sins; and without a view of pardon through the blood of Christ, a child of God cannot draw nigh to its heavenly Father, with that boldness, and cheerfulness, and filial fear it should; but there is forgiveness with him, that he may be feared; to whomsoever God stands in the relation of a Covenant God and Father, to them he manifests himself as a God pardoning iniquity, transgression, and sin: unless the word "father" here not to be taken for such a special relation of grace, but only as expressive of him as the God of nature and providence, who has made; and takes care of all his creatures; in which sense he is the Father of all: as it is said, "have we not all one Father? hath not one God created us?" ( Malachi 2:10 ) ; and so "our heavenly Father", or "our Father" which is in heaven, may be so called only from the place where he dwells; and not from the grace he bestows on men, making them partakers of his heavenly gifts and calling, and blessing them in heavenly places, or things in Christ Jesus: in the former view of him it will not necessarily follow, that he does forgive sin, whereas under the latter consideration of him it will; for forgiveness is one of the heavenly gifts and things which he blesses his children with; (See Gill on Matthew 6:15).