Contrary To What Many Have Been Led To Believe Forgiveness Is Not Forgetting
Forgive and forget, we have been told by so many through the years. Its a nice saying, but highly misleading. Why?
First of all, God does not forget, notwithstanding what you think Jeremiah 31:34 is saying . This language of the prophet is metaphor, a word picture, designed to emphasize Gods gracious determination and resolve not to hold us liable for our sin. He has canceled the debt and will never demand payment. If God could literally forget it would undermine the truth of his omniscience. God always has and always will know all things, but he has promised never to use our sin against us or treat us as if the reality of our sin were present in his mind.
Second, forgive and forget, quite simply, is psychologically impossible. As soon as you make up your mind to forget something you can be assured that, in most instances, it is the one thing that will linger at the forefront of your conscious thinking. We all forget things, but we do it unintentionally over the course of time. Life and experience and old age work to erase certain things from our memory, but that is rarely if ever the case with sins committed against us and the wounds we have suffered.
A Prayer To Help Forgive Others
Lord, Help me to forgive as you forgive, teach me to love as you love. Fill me with your Spirit so that I can choose what is best, honorable, and righteous. I am weak Lord, I struggle to forgive those who have wronged me, but you are strong Lord, and know that even when I am weak your strength within me can help me to forgive.
Thank you for your love, and thank you that its not all up to me. You have equipped me with the power and grace to go through this so that in the end you will be glorified.
I pray that your overflowing power will fill my life, allowing me to make a difference in the world and bring you honor. I ask for your assistance in reminding me that the most important things we can do in this life are simply to obey you and choose to love others. Amen.
Why Must We Forgive
The best reason to forgive is simple: Jesus commanded us to forgive. We learn from scripture in context to forgiveness that if we don’t forgive, neither will we be forgiven:
For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
We also forgive so that our prayers will not be hindered:
And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.
In summary, we forgive out of obedience to the Lord. It is a choice, a decision we make. However, as we do our part “forgiving,” we discover the command to forgive is in place for our own good, and we receive the reward of our forgiveness, which is spiritual freedom.
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Forgiving Others Can Be Really Difficult
Forgiving others is important, but sometimes it can be really difficult to do. Why should I forgive, and how can I do it?
Then Peter came to Him and said, Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times? Jesus said to him, I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. Matthew 18:21-22.
For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. Matthew 6:14-15.
Forgiving others who have wronged you, whether for a relatively small thing, or for a seriously damaging act against you, can sometimes seem like an insurmountably difficult thing to do. In some cases its a process that really takes time. Yet, the Bible is crystal clear on the necessity of it. And there are no caveats such as unless,if, or but. As in all things, we need to look to our Forerunner, Captain, and Master as our example.
What Does The Bible Say About Forgiveness
forgivenessforgiveforgiveforgivenessThe law is only a shadow of the good things that are comingnot the realities themselves. For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship. Otherwise, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins. But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins. It is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. âThis is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds.â Then he adds: âTheir sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.â And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary. blood of the covenantforgive and forgetforgetforgettingforgive and forgetchurch disciplineturn the other cheekresentmentbitternessgossip
God Teaches Us About This In The Parable Of The Unmerciful Servant
Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants.As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him.
Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. At this the servant fell on his knees before him. Be patient with me, he begged, and I will pay back everything. The servants master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.
Forgiveness Can Change Your Life
I tell you, her sins and they are many have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.
When you experience true forgiveness, love is the result. Not only will you love God for forgiving you, but being forgiven by a loving God allows you to love others in a way you cannot on your own.
Understanding the depth of your sin and the depth of Gods love and forgiveness will inspire you to forgive and love more freely. Understanding you are a sinner forgiven by a loving God can radically change the way you see others.
Why Is Forgiveness Important In The Bible
Forgiveness is paramount in emotional healing. Without forgiveness we stall the process of moving forward. The choice to forgive, releases the offense to God to do with what He wills . Whereas, unforgiveness is where bitterness and resentment grows.
What Are The Four Steps Of Forgiveness
4 Steps to Forgiveness
- Talk to someone you trust and open up about how hurt, sad or angry you may feel. Let your emotions out, and dont apologize for them.
- Dont withdraw or isolate yourself. Stay connected and feel the pain, even though it hurts. With someone there to listen, the pain is more bearable.
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Bible Verses About Gods Forgiveness And Love
While we were yet sinners God sent His son Jesus to die for our sins and by so doing demonstrated His love, commitment, and mercy toward us. Love is a hallmark of God, and to manifest His great love for us He forgave us from all of our sins everyone. Here are a few scriptures to remind us that forgiveness is of God and a quality we should all poses.
Jesus Is Not Only On Your Side When You Need Forgiveness But He Himself Was The Sacrifice That Allows You To Be Forgiven
My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous. He Himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.
When you sin, you may feel alone, but thats not true: Jesus is on your side. He is the one who stands between you and God to ask that you be forgiven.
But He does so much more than just ask. He sacrificed Himself and took on the penalty for your sin so God can forgive you without excusing your sin.
Whats even more amazing is that Jesus didnt sacrifice Himself for just some people or just the really good people. He sacrificed Himself for the whole world: every single person. You can never be too bad or too far away from God. Anyone can trust in Jesus sacrifice and be forgiven.
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The Biblical Context Of Forgiveness In Marriage
Joy has been married for five years now. Her husband has cheated on her.
Although it has happened for the first time, Joy cannot forgive him for what he did. He is remorseful, but Joy is not able to get over the pain of infidelity.
She has tried to visit all the her. Her husband does not see it as an issue.
She has gone back to her parents time and again, but the man keeps coming back, asking for forgiveness.
Joy believes that her husband is cheating on her again. But, she doesnt have any tangible proof to affirm her belief.
As a Christian wife, she is in a catch 22 situation. She no longer knows what the Bible says about forgiveness. She is caught in between forgiveness and the act of infidelity.
As a Christian and a wife, what does forgiveness mean to her and her marriage according to the Bible?
After Forgiveness Comes Love Even If Forgetting Isnt Possible
Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins . Sometimes things happen in our lives that we just cannot forget, even if we are able to forgive. While we may not be able to erase our memory, we do have control over our actions. We can love those who have wronged us after we forgive them. Its hard to harbor ill will toward those we actively serve, love and pray for.
Brent Rinehart is a public relations practitioner and freelance writer. He blogs about the amazing things parenting teaches us about life, work, faith and more at www.apparentstuff.com. You can also follow him on .
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Youre Not Too Bad To Be Forgiven Turn To God And He Will Forgive You
Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thought of doing wrong. Let them turn to the LORD that He may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for He will forgive generously.
Even if youve done things youre ashamed of and even if you dont feel like youre a good person, its not too late for you: God will still forgive you. If you turn from the things that you know are wrong and turn to God, He will have mercy on you and forgive you.
If you confess what youve done wrong and ask God, He can help you change your ways. It may not be an instant, miraculous change, but when you receive Gods forgiveness, He will give you strength to change your life.
You Simply Need To Confess Your Sins To God And He Will Forgive You
If we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.
Now that Jesus has sacrificed Himself once for all time, forgiveness is ours for the asking. Forgiveness is not something you need to earn Jesus already earned it. You simply need to confess what youve done wrong to receive Gods forgiveness.
God not only forgives, He washes those He forgives clean from their wrongdoing and makes them new. God is ready and willing to forgive you. Unlike a human being, He does not hold grudges or need time before He will forgive you. You can have forgiveness right now: Confess that you have sinned, and ask for God to forgive you. Its that simple.
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Forgiving Others As God Has Forgiven Us Means We Resolve To Revoke Revenge
As noted earlier, this doesnt mean you cease desiring that justice be served. It does mean you refuse, by Gods grace, to let the anger and pain energize an agenda to exact payment from that person, whether that payment be emotional, relational, physical, or financial. It also means you refuse to use your past suffering to justify present sin.
Some People Dont Know The Seriousness Of Holding A Grudge
People say things like, but you just dont know what he did. Let me tell you something. You just dont know what you did! You have sinned against a holy God! You do nothing, but sin. Even your greatest works are filthy rags and they are never 100% fully for the glory of God.
Even the legal system shows that a good judge cant forgive a criminal such as yourself. God took your place. God suffered for you on the cross. God lived the life you couldnt live. There are some people that used to curse Jesus, but now they trust in Him as their Lord and Savior.
Jesus should have never forgiven them just like He should have never forgiven a wretched man such as myself. How dare you? If God can forgive murderers, if God can forgive blasphemers, if God can forgive idolaters how come you cant forgive for that small situation?
God would be just and loving if He sent us all to Hell. We cheer in movies when criminals get what they deserve. How dare you? If you cant show mercy God will not show mercy on you.
Unforgiveness is evidence of an unbeliever. Repent. Forgive your parents, forgive that old friend, forgive your spouse, forgive your kids, forgive that person in your church. Dont hold it in your heart any longer. Repent.
20. Matthew 6:14-15 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
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When Others Sin Against You
Matthew 1815 Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother.16 But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.17 And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.
Matthew 18:15-17 speaks of cases where someone sins against us. Our response in such cases is two-fold.
How Do We Forgive Someone
There is no magic formula that allows us to forgive. We must set it as a goal and continue to strive for it. A good place to start is how the Bible tells us to remember that the other person is just as guilty of sin as we are . Our sin separates us all from God and knowing that can give us a better perspective.
Perhaps a good way to start on the path toward forgiving someone is to pray that God would allow you to see them like HE sees them. Remind yourself that Jesus cherished them enough to die for them as well as you. Let God break your heart for them and thereby heal you of your hurt from their hand. I am not suggesting that you should do this in a way that allows yourself to be in an abusive relationship or create an unsafe situation for your children . If that type of thing continues, the offender has not repented and the rule regarding severance should be applied. God did not create you or anyone else to suffer abuse from another.
I am not promising that this will happen instantly, healing can take time depending on what the offense was and how badly someone was hurt by it. Our friends from Alcoholics Anonymous recommend as part of seeking forgiveness, that we make sure that in seeking forgiveness we do not cause further damage to someone. It may take time before it is wise for you to seek forgiveness from someone or you could make the issue worse. During your wait, pray to God for the opportunity of healing and restoration.
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What Is Forgiveness In Christianity
Forgiveness is a very important concept in Christianity because it shows Gods love and mercy towards us all . We are called upon by Him every day to forgive those who sin against us so that we may receive His forgiveness in return .
Forgiveness is also an important part of living a happy life. When we hold on to anger and bitterness toward others, it causes us pain which leads to unhappiness over time. Forgiving someone frees you from that burden so you can focus on other things! Its also important to note that forgiving someone does not mean you have to forget what happened. You can still remember the hurt and pain that was caused, but you dont need to dwell on it anymore.
Forgiveness is a beautiful thing because it allows us to move on from the past and focus on the present and future. When we forgive others, it sets us free from the chains of bitterness and anger. It allows us to live our lives in peace and joy!
If you are struggling with forgiving someone, please know that you are not alone! There is help available for you, and God desires for you to have a healthy relationship with Him and others. He wants you to experience all of His peace, hope, and joy that comes through forgiveness!
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