Chapter CONTEXT from MHCC: I. The apostle exhorts us to set our hearts upon heaven and take them off from this world (v. 1-4). II. He exhorts to the mortification of sin, in the various instances of it (v. 5-11). III. He earnestly presses to mutual love and compassion (v. 12-17). And concludes with exhortations to relative duties, of wives and husbands, parents and children, masters and servants (v. 18-25).
As always context is everything. Here the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is speaking to the redeemed church at Colosia. Many modern Bible texts have headings for the Chapter something like “Put On The New Self” and each verse is directed toward believers. So Paul is instructing us to be gracious and forgive each other (fellow believers) just as Christ forgave us. But what about if an unbeliever offends or does some injustice towards us must we forgive them?
The answer can be found in Matthew 18:21-22. Here Peter is asking Jesus about the Jewish custom/requirement to forgive someone (Brother, Neighbor) a minimum of three times for the same offense before you can be done with them. So Peter figures he will ask Jesus if seven (7) times is enough. of course, Jesus dumbfounds Peter and every one by responding with a simple math equation of 70×7.
Understanding and exercising true Biblical Forgiveness is critical for the physical and mental health of all believers. Anytime we let unresolved anger, animosity, etc. fester in us it affects our Christian witness. Here are a few resources worth reviewing: