ForgivenessBro. Ron Rupé
12/10/2000 6:00 PM
There is no peace where there is no forgiveness.
Two Aspects of Forgiveness.
- Forgiveness from God.
- Forgiveness to others.
Forgiveness (Dictionary Definition):
To give up the wish to punish or get even; to not have hard feelings at or toward someone anymore.
Bible Definition of Forgiveness:
Ephesians 4:31, 32
This scripture mentions "forgiving" twice; God forgiving us and us forgiving others. "Frankly Forgive": Without restriction or restraint; no conditions on the one you are forgiving; the forgiver has no reservations about the forgiveness. "... as God hath forgiven you..." We need confidence that God has forgiven us. If you have confidence that God has forgiven, you will have peace. It is simple - "I asked. He forgave." He doesn't require penance. God doesn't require works for forgiveness. The thought that you have to work for forgiveness gives no peace and confidence. When you ask, God doesn't partially forgive, or place you on probation. God forgives freely and frankly. This is divine forgiveness. "Even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." He forgives for Christ's sake. God doesn't forgive us for "our sake" or for "someone else's sake," but for "Christ's sake."
1 John 4:10, 11
God sent his son to be the "propitiation" of our sin. Propitiation: prevents anger and wins forgiveness of one offended. It wins favor. God's son is this for us. Christ died for our forgiveness. For God to ignore Christ's sacrifice - it would be as though Christ died in vain. For the sake of all Christ went through, he forgives.
Isaiah 53:3-5, 7, 11
God is satisfied. He has forgiven us for Christ's sake.
This shows what divine forgiveness is like - "being justified freely." Our faith and confidence of forgiveness is found in Christ's blood. We can be satisfied that we are forgiven through Christ's suffering.
- God hath forgiven us...
- Frankly forgiven...
- Without conditions on us...
- Without reservations from him...
- For Christ's sake...
1 John 4:10-13
God's love is shown by this. It is how we understand God's love - by the propitiation of our sins. "Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another." We need to love one another in that way. Forgive one another. God has given us of the spirit of love and forgiveness. What is your confidence that you are saved? It is God in and through us - forgiveness and love. Is your spirit loving and forgiving? "How can you expect others to believe God will forgive them, if you won't forgive them?" We need to demonstrate God's forgiveness. How can you have faith that God has forgiven you if you won't forgive?
- We should forgive others for our own sake:
Ephesians 4:31, 32
An unforgiving person continually carries a hard load of wrath, anger, bitterness and malice. They have constant clamor within. It destroys the unforgiving person. It destroys their mind, breaks down their emotions, and wrecks their health. Forgiveness is for your good. If you go through life tenderhearted, forgiving, kind, etc., you'll live longer. You will have a positive outlook on the world.
- We, also, must forgive for Christ's sake. Who are you to hold a grudge?
1 John 2:1, 2
Christ didn't just die for you, but so that everyone could be pardoned. Who are you to hold a grudge against one Christ died to forgive? Let it go!
This scripture shows how we should be to others. Our forgiveness should be just like God's. We should "frankly forgive." No conditions - just forgive. Don't put them on probation. What does someone have to do to win your forgiveness? If the answer is anything other than "nothing," you are unforgiving.
Colossians 3:12, 13
This scripture shows forgiveness in action. "...if any have a quarrel against any..." forgive. There are other places in the Bible that speak of disagreements and instruct us to "go to your brother." There are very few circumstances where you should have to go to your brother. Most often you should just forgive. It should be the exception when we go to our brother. We should just let most things go. If we go to our brother, it should be about something serious. The vast majority of what causes us to be offended should be frankly forgiven. Are we forgiving, or are we just quarrelsome? Do you always have something between you and someone else? If you are always having struggles that need forgiving - then it is quite possible that the problem is you.
- Never have a quarrel. Don't fret and stew over things. Focus on your duties and your relationship with God.
- Don't worry about quarrelsome people. Try to work things out, and not be offensive. Pray for them! Some relationships won't be good and have to be committed to God. When you have done what you can, leave it with God.
1 John 1:9
If you confess your sins, God is faithful to forgive. He is faithful and doesn't beat us over the head. God is not like other people. Forgiveness is God's remedy for heavy burdens. It is the remedy for the burden of your sins. It is also the remedy for the heavy burden of bitterness, malice, and grudges. God can help you to have his spirit of forgiveness.