Forgiveness -what a wonderful word. Forgiveness is something we all long for – and something that was purchased for us at GREAT COST!
Forgiveness for our sins was paid with the Blood of Jesus!
“In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” Ephesians 1:7
“In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins” Colossians 1:14
Forgiveness – God loved us so much that He gave His only Son to die in our place so that we could receive forgiveness for our sins. What a freedom we enjoy when we know we've been forgiven! I remember so clearly how I felt after I was saved and knew that I had received forgiveness from my heavenly Father through Jesus His Son! It was as though I had been carrying chains and shackles around with me that I had grown so accustomed to carrying I didn't even realize how heavy they were – until the weight was gone!
In a very small way it is like the difference a mom feels when the need to carry the entire baby paraphernalia is gone after her last child no longer requires a diaper bag filled with everything she could possibly need, stroller, blankets, car seats etc. I remember when my 4th child was all done with the diaper bag and so forth that I kept feeling like I was forgetting something – my arms were free! I actually remember it very clearly – we were going to the Santa Clara County Fair and I didn't need a stroller, diaper bag, Sippy cup – nothing! I remember raising my arms in the air and saying, “Wow! I am free! I don’t have anything I need to carry – I am even going to leave my purse in the car!” I didn't realize they were was burdensome while I needed them – I had grown accustomed to carrying all those things with me for the 7 ½ years as I went from 1 to 4 children in 5 years!
We are all so very thankful when we are forgiven. Forgiveness is something given to us as a gift from God…and probably one of the hardest things that God has commanded us to give. I know people have a hard time parting with their money – but I believe more people struggle with forgiveness.
I know that I find it easy to forgive someone that has injured me – but it is a different story when I must forgive someone that has harmed my family! Yet, God does not place any parameters around “who” we are to forgive, In fact in Mark 11:25, He makes it pretty clear who we are to forgive when He says, “And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
Refusing to forgive is a form of pride; it is an act of disobedience.
"For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." Matthew 6:14 – 15
On the other side of forgiveness – is judgment. While forgiveness for our sins from God brings us redemption and allows us to know freedom; not forgiving puts us in the place of a judge, condemning someone and deeming them unworthy of forgiveness. That puts us in a horrible place!
Jesus showed us the danger of not forgiving…
"Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses." Matthew 18:32-35
That’s a pretty strong statement – wouldn't you agree?
Furthermore in James we are warned…
"Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?" James 4:11-12 (Basically saying, "Who do you think you are?")
In order to do that we must humble ourselves in the sight of God – we must receive the grace that God will give us as we humble ourselves and forgive others. “But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” James 4:5
We are living in a day where there is so much turmoil in this world – as wives, mothers, Christians, we need to be in a place where our prayers are answered – and that won’t happen unless we forgive “any” against whom we have “ought.”
“Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.” Luke 6:37, 38
Hope you'll forgive me for this looonnnggg post :) Have a wonderful day!