Very few people give Peter credit.
In Matthew 18:21-22, Peter asks Jesus how many times a person should forgive their enemy. He suggests seven times. Jesus says seven times seventy-times (or, in some translations, seventy-seven times.) Peter, if anything, is taken aback.
Most people write Peter’s question off as being too selfish. But if you think about it, forgiving someone seven times is quite an effort. Missionary Joseph Hovsepian is more than willing to attest to this. Not only did Missionary Hovsepian have to forgive the government that killed his father seven times—he has had to forgive this government every day of his life.
Missionary Hovsepian’s father, Haik Hovsepian, was a highly revered member of the Iranian church. His martyrdom inspired many to come to Christ. But it also left Missionary Hovsepian with a shattered heart.
“To the world, my father was a hero,” Missionary Hovsepian said. “But to me, he would always be the man that I would never see again.”
Missionary Hovsepian admitted that he and his family hated the Iranian government and wanted God to wreak vengeance upon them.
“In Iran, there were pictures of the Ayatollah everywhere,” Missionary Hovsepian said. “Whenever we saw these pictures, we wanted to scream and throw mud at them. The government had hurt us. We wanted to hurt them back.”
But God took Missionary Hovsepian on a very different path:
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