The Law of Forgiveness

THE LAW OF forgiveness

forgive and you will be forgiven

(Pastor Lee Jackson – FFWC)

  1. INTRODUCTION – (story of rusty woomer, a condemned prisoner, “21 unbreakable laws of life”, by max anders, Pp 108-110).  it is difficult to over estimate the power of forgiveness.  receiving forgiveness sets you free from guilt and shame, granting forgiveness removes the anger, bitterness and resentment and promotes physical and mental healing.

text:    Eph 4:32  And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. (nkjv)

II.            our capacity to forgive comes from our ability to trust god

do we believe that “ALL THINGS WORK TOGETHER FOR GOOD TO THOSE THAT LOVE GOD…”

JOSEPH CAME TO UNDERSTAND THAT IT WAS GOD WHO CAUSED HIM TO SOLD INTO EGYPT TO SAVE LIFE! (GENESIS 50:19 – 21)

Jesus accepted that it was the father’s will for him to PRAYED while ON THE CROSS: “FATHER FORGIVE THEM FOR THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO…”

DISCUSS IMPLICATIONS OF THE YEAR OF JUBILEE – INVOLVES FORGIVENESS OF DEBT, RESTORATION PROPERTY and freeing of israelites who had become indentured salves every fifty years (LEV 25: 28, 54-55)

 

II.  WHY MUST WE FORGIVE?

unless we forgive and receive forgiveness our wounds will never heal

BECAUSE JESUS TAUGHT US DO SO (MATT 6:12)

BECAUSE YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER FORGAVE YOU (MATT 18:32 – 35)

SO THAT YOUR WORSHIP IS NOT HINDERED (MATT. 5: 23 – 24)

SO THAT GOD WILL respond to YOUR REQUESTS  and continue to forgive you (MARK 11: 24-26)

SO THAT YOU CAN HEAL IN THE INNER MAN AND AVOID BITTERNESS AND INNER DEFILEMENT and live in peace with others (EPHESIANS 4:31 – 32, HEBREWS 12:14, 15 niv)

 

III.  HOW MUST WE FORGIVE? (1PET. 3:9)

COMPLETELY, THE WAY GOD FORGIVEs US

WITHOUT REMEMBRANCE

 

IV.   WHEN SHOULD WE FORGIVE? (1cor 4:12-13)

IMMEDIATELY – we refuse to take on offense

BEFORE WE ARE ASKED

 

V.  HOW MANY TIMES SHOULD WE FORGIVE someone? (MATT. 18:21 – 34)

AS MANY TIMES AS NECESSARY

AS MANY TIMES AS YOU WANT GOD TO FORGIVE YOU

VI.           biblical examples of forgiveness

A.            the prodical son – restored into the family

B.            the woman caught in act of adultery – neither do i condemn thee…

C.            mary magdelene – washed his feet with her hair – forgiven much, loved much!

 VII.         FINAL INSTRUCTIONS (ROMANS 12:14 –21) STORY of corRIE Ten boom forgiving her former captor & persecutor.  forgiveness is a decision!

SCRIPTURES RELATING TO FORGIVENESS:

 Gen 50:19 , 20 niv: But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God?20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.

Mat 6:12 KJV:  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Mat 18:32 – 35 KJV: “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. 35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.”

Mar 11:24-26 KJV:  Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. 25  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. 26  But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.

Mat 5:23, 24 Kjv:  Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; 24  Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

Mar 11:24, 25 kjv:  Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

Eph 4:30- 32 kjv: And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

1Pe 3:8, 9 niv Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. 9 Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.

Heb 12:14, 15 niv:  Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. 15 See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.

Rom 12:14-21 BLESS those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. 17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

CORRIE TEN BOON ON FORGIVENESS- “I’m Still Learning to Forgive”

It was in a church in Munich that I saw him, a balding heavy-set man in a gray overcoat, a brown felt hat clutched between his hands. People were filing out of the basement room where I had just spoken. It was 1947 and I had come from Holland to defeated Germany with the message that God forgives. …

And that’s when I saw him, working his way forward against the others. One moment I saw the overcoat and the brown hat; the next, a blue uniform and a visored cap with its skull and crossbones. It came back with a rush: the huge room with its harsh overhead lights, the pathetic pile of dresses and shoes in the center of the floor, the shame of walking naked past this man. I could see my sister’s frail form ahead of me, ribs sharp beneath the parchment skin. Betsie, how thin you were!

Betsie and I had been arrested for concealing Jews in our home during the Nazi occupation of Holland; this man had been a guard at Ravensbruck concentration camp where we were sent. …

“You mentioned Ravensbruck in your talk,” he was saying. “I was a guard in there.” No, he did not remember me.

“I had to do it — I knew that. The message that God forgives has a prior condition: that we forgive those who have injured us.”

“But since that time,” he went on, “I have become a Christian. I know that God has forgiven me for the cruel things I did there, but I would like to hear it from your lips as well. Fraulein, …” his hand came out, … “will you forgive me?”

And I stood there — I whose sins had every day to be forgiven — and could not. Betsie had died in that place — could he erase her slow terrible death simply for the asking?

It could not have been many seconds that he stood there, hand held out, but to me it seemed hours as I wrestled with the most difficult thing I had ever had to do.

For I had to do it — I knew that. The message that God forgives has a prior condition: that we forgive those who have injured us. “If you do not forgive men their trespasses,” Jesus says, “neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.” …

And still I stood there with the coldness clutching my heart. But forgiveness is not an emotion — I knew that too. Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart. “Jesus, help me!” I prayed silently. “I can lift my hand, I can do that much. You supply the feeling.”

And so woodenly, mechanically, I thrust my hand into the one stretched out to me. And as I did, an incredible thing took place. The current started in my shoulder, raced down my arm, sprang into our joined hands. And then this healing warmth seemed to flood my whole being, bringing tears to my eyes.

“I forgive you, brother!” I cried. “With all my heart!”

For a long moment we grasped each other’s hands, the former guard and the former prisoner. I had never known God’s love so intensely as I did then.

Reprinted with permission from Guideposts. Copyright © 1972 by Guideposts, Carmel, New York 1

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