Posted by: missionventureministries | November 14, 2011

FORGIVENESS – Colossians 3:13

“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” – Colossians 3:13

Christians should have a heart that forgives, such as Christ displayed upon the cross; Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34. We are also to: “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:13. When we do this, true repentance will flow quite easily. However, false repentance, like those having a form of godliness always seeking truth but never practicing it (2 Timothy 3), will lack these elements and spiritual depth.

A forgiving heart forgives, regardless if the other person asks for forgiveness or not. It means letting go and letting God, because your forgiveness should not be withheld pending the other person’s repentance. Forgiveness should show Christ’s love, mercy and compassion; “be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” – Ephesians 4:32. We let God deal with the end result because God does not forgive where there is no repentance but God does shows grace and mercy as He invites sinners to Him through godly repentance. “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

Consequently, when we commit a sin we are to, “confess your trespassesto one another, and pray for one another, that we may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” James 5:16

When the Holy Spirit points out, or reminds us there is an offense between us and another, even while in the process of worshiping, we must stop and go be reconciled to that person first, then we can return to worship. “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you; leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” Matthew 5:23-24

Jesus said: “If your brother sins against you go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.” Matthew 18:15-17

We need to remember that un-forgiveness is an act of pride, which equated to sin and therefore, our unity in Christ is severed by sin.

True forgiveness produces godly sorrow, which devotes itself to getting right with God and man. We are eager to be without blame. Godly sorrow leads to confession and repentance. As Paul wrote to the Corinthians: “I now rejoice, not that you were made sorrowful, but that you were made sorrowful to the point of repentance; for you were made sorrowful according to the will of God, so that you might not suffer loss in anything through us. For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death. For behold what earnestness this very thing, this godly sorrow, has produced in you: what vindication of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what longing, what zeal, what avenging of wrong! In everything you demonstrated yourselves to be innocent in the matter.” 2 Corinthians 7:9-11

Let us keep in mind that we are not to judge and we will not be judged. Do not condemn, and we will not be condemned. Forgive, and we will be forgiven – Luke 6:37

As Christians we are to be committed to the love that the Holy Scripture teaches us through the ministry of reconciliation, because “if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7

Remember: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9-10

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