Stop making what someone did TO you bigger than what Jesus did FOR you.
We must learn to re-size our experiences. Instead of obsessing on the wrongs done to us, we must dwell on what Jesus did for us on the Cross. Yes, earthly injustices sting, but viewing them in light of eternity shows us that they are really inconsequential by comparison.
Jesus said, “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” (Mark 11:25).
FORGIVENESS IS A COMMAND FROM GOD. Jesus is not merely making a suggestion, He is laying down the law for His followers. Forgiven people are commanded to forgive.
And forgiven people have the power to forgive! The Lord empowers us to fulfill His commands. Believers are supernaturally endowed to obey all divine imperatives. And the command to forgive is no exception!
Grace never displaces God’s commands. Rather, grace enables us to fulfill them.
FORGIVENESS IS CANCELLING A DEBT. “Forgive” means to let go, release, or to cancel a debt.
When we forgive, we reject our right of revenge. Vengeance is not ours, that belongs to the Lord (see Romans 12:19). It is handing our case over to the Judge of the universe and allowing Him to handle our offender as He sees fit.
Forgiveness is letting go of the debts others owe us. It is transferring our legal case and our hurts over the One who absorbed our sin debt on Calvary.
Moving on from injustice is essential for emotional, physical, and spiritual health. That’s why we must let go of the wrongs we have suffered.
FORGIVENESS IS A CHOICE YOU MAKE. Choosing to forgive is not something that God does for you. It is a choice you must make. Our personal responsibility to forgive is reflected in other Scriptures as well…
“And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors” (Matt. 6:12).
“And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you” (Eph. 4:32).
Like so many things in the Christian life we must engage our will, and elect to release our offenders.
FORGIVENESS IS A CONDITION FOR PRAYER. Note carefully the words of Christ, “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.”
Our horizontal relationships on earth influence our prayerful interactions with heaven. Fellowship with God is conditional, and it is based on obeying Christ’s command to forgive those who wrong us. Lingering resentment and seeking retaliation so grieves the Spirit of God that prayer becomes an impossibility. Unforgiveness destroys the soul, and all attempts to commune with our heavenly Father.
So take Jesus’ words to heart, “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.” By acting in obedience you will find restoration with the Lord, and peace within your own soul.
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