Words Of Encouragement
by A Bride of Christ
Blessed-Ones, I want to continue our conversation from last week regarding forgiveness. I don’t take the subject of forgiving others who have wronged us, lightly. There are those of you who have endured horrific, painful situations where the wound is as fresh as a week ago or as far back as 20 years ago. I won’t presume to think thoughts of forgiving the person or persons involved should come easy. No one can put a time restraint on your pain. Many times, it’s that we don’t know how to process the pain which can move from shock, to hurt, to anger to hate to vengeance.
Forgiveness doesn’t come, naturally. It is Supernatural! It’s Gods command – His idea. And because it is Gods idea, only He can give you what you need to get through the forgiving process, if you let Him. He can answer the question of why people hurt others in such ways that inflict pain so deeply? The response: We live in a fallen, sinful world. We’re imperfect people who, by our own free will granted to us by God, make choices that many times negatively affect the lives of others. It is the sin of this world that God had to send his Son, to die for us. There isn’t anything that we go through in this life or will ever go through that our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, hasn’t first experienced.
Scripture tells us that we don’t have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one (Jesus) who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin (Hebrews 4:15). Jesus came to this earth with a purpose and He knew beforehand what he was to endure. He was lied on, spit in the face, struck with fists, and beaten (Matthew 26). He endured the most horrendous death on the cross for you and me. He wasn’t shocked by how he was betrayed by one in his close circle; one of His very own disciples, Judas Iscariot. Yet, Jesus, being fully God, was also fully man, and therefore, no doubt was hurt by Judas’ betrayal. Jesus did not get angry but spoke the truth in Love and calls us to do the same (Ephesians 4:15). Jesus tell us, “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you , do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you; that you may be the children of your Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 5:44
Jesus did not take revenge and he does not want us to retaliate either. He tells us to leave room for His wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the LORD (Romans 12:19NIV). Though Jesus isn’t physically here, He, through the power of the Holy Spirit, lives in the heart of every Believer. With the help of The Holy Spirit and the Peace, He provides, we can learn to forgive all who wrong us, no matter the level of hurt and pain they cause.
Jesus lived a life of complete obedience to His Father, The Creator of the universe, who called the galaxies into being by the authority of His voice. Jesus illustrated by His life the need to be under His Fathers authority and therefore is the model example of the authority of forgiveness, by which we should live.
Maybe forgiving others is not your issue. Maybe you are not able to forgive yourself. Blessed-One, we are told in Romans 8:1, “There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Scripture also says that “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” 2 Corinthians 5:17. If you continue to condemn yourself after receiving the grace and forgiveness of Christ, isn’t there a sense in which you are denying the faith and crucifying the Son of God all over again? See Hebrews 6:6.
Here are some additional scriptures to study to help you with the process of forgiving self and forgiving others: Colossians 3:13; Matthew 6:12; Proverbs 17:9; Ephesians 4:32; Matthew 6:14; 2 Chronicles 7:14; Luke 6:37; Matthew 18:21-22; Proverbs 28:13; Psalm 86:5; Micah 7:18; Mark 11:25; Acts 13:38-39; 1 John 2:2; Joel 2:13; Psalm 32:5; Ephesians 1:7; 2 Chronicles 30:9; Matthew 6:12; Acts 3:19; Acts 2:38; James 5:14-15; Isaiah 55:7; Acts 17:30.
Be blessed, be a blessing,
Bride of Christ ?
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