Jesus taught all who follow Him to specifically pray that God would forgive us based on our forgiveness of those who hurt us. That means if we are unforgiving, we are praying that God be unforgiving to us! That is a very scary thought!
Our forgiveness does not change the world’s justice, and it does not change God’s justice. Forgiveness is laying down the right we think we have to judge the offender, and turning it over to God, letting Him be the Judge and letting Him deal with the other person.
The last two studies on forgiveness focused on Jesus’ teaching on forgiveness, and His living example of forgiveness. In this study, we are going to look at some common misconceptions, deceptions and lies about forgiveness, and counter them with God’s Truth, using a “case study” from the Chardon Ohio school shooting in 2012.
Do you know any older people that are consumed with bitterness and self-pity? Stop and look at how it has damaged their life, their relationships, their joy, their peace and their happiness. Take a hard look at the consequences. It is NOT worth it.
It takes a lot of emotional and mental energy to keep a wound open and feed a grudge. Anger and self-pity are a poison to our heart, spirit and soul that will eventually consume us. Unforgiveness gives bitterness a chance to take hold, and makes us a slave to the person we refuse to forgive. They occupy a room in our mind and consume our thoughts. They steal our energy, our joy and our peace.
Forgiveness is ultimately a SPIRITUAL BATTLE.
Jesus hung on the cross, humiliated, beaten and bloody. He chose that exact moment to do something no ordinary person would have EVER considered doing. Something completely unexpected. Something inconceivable. Something incredibly powerful. Something shockingly beautiful that displayed His unfailing love.
I don’t know anyone who hasn’t struggled at some point with the pain and hurt in their life. We’ve all been hurt, and for followers of Jesus Christ we all have to learn how to deal with it in the way God has given us.
The problem is, what comes much more naturally to most of us is to hold on the pain and hurt of life.
The result of Adam and Eve’s rebellion against God and their rejection of Him as Lord and Master is clear. By Genesis 4 we have sin, evil, suffering, pain, depression, hurt, headache… and murder. Sin is throughout the Bible, and there are always significant consequences.