Forgiveness

22 01 2013

Forgive and forget? Unlikely. This is a common misconception about a fractured relationship. Minimizing the offense could also be added. You know, “It really wasn’t a big deal, so there’s nothing to forgive.” Nor dealing at all with the offense is a formula for disaster. Unresolved conflict will always raise its ugly head again.

Bible forgiveness carries the idea of “release;” “sending away,” or “letting go.” The idea of a debt or something owed is inherent to the concept of forgiveness. You could say that forgiveness is the loving, voluntary cancellation of a debt. The price of forgiveness is high, because both sides incur debt. For the offended, the cost is relinquishing the demand to seek revenge. For the offender, the cost involves taking ownership for what was done, refusing to make excuses, and making restitution if necessary. The cost is high but the restored relationship and your release from bitterness or guilt is well worth it.

Often, one party will dig in and reuse to enter this continual process of canceling a debt. They will not, “let it go.” If so, at least the stronger of the two should offer a selfless and humble forgiveness. Leave vengeance in the hands of God.

“Take heed to yourselves; if thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him” Luke 17:3-4

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2 responses

18 02 2008
DP

Pastor Dave, Thank you for this article on forgiveness. It struck a chord with me. Recently, I aproached a former friend that “ripped me off”. For years I harbored a deep loathing for this guy. I at times even thought about how I could “get even”. This haunted me for years. Just the mention of his name would bring out a bad side of me. Anyway, I approached him and told him that for years I held resentment for what happened but in the big picture, it really doesn’t matter. Whe shook hands and I felt like a huge weight was lifted from me. I can’t claim to be a Christian and not do what God said to do. As Jesus said ” Why do you call me Lord and not do the things I say” Thanks for such a simple, but yet a very good article.

22 01 2013
Rob

Powerful topic PD, great blog. Thanks!

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