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Colossians 3:12-13 (NET)
Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with a heart of mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another, if someone happens to have a complaint against anyone else. Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also forgive others.
I had a conversation with a man who was trying to prove to me that the teachings of Jesus were for those under the law and not for those who are born again. His biggest point was that Jesus taught that if we do not forgive others who have wronged us, our heavenly FATHER would not forgive us our trespasses. But the apostles taught Christians to forgive others because they have been forgiven, not so that they will be forgiven.
I had to point out to him that what Jesus said was actually meant for those who are already believers because we are the only ones who can come to God as our FATHER. No one comes to the FATHER except through Christ.
I showed him from the parable of the unmerciful servant (in Matt 18:21-35) that the unmerciful servant had first received forgiveness from his master before he was expected to forgive the other servant that owed him. His master did not forgive him because he forgave, but he was expected to forgive because he had been forgiven.
I went on to explain to him that the only criterium for receiving the forgiveness of God is to believe in Christ Jesus and accept God’s grace which brings forgiveness because of the sacrifice of Christ. That if we consistently refuse to forgive others who wrong us, we are proving that we do not appreciate or acknowledge God’s grace in forgiving us.
As we walk on the earth, we are going to need cleansing by the blood from time to time (1 John 1:7). We would not receive this cleansing and forgiveness if we refuse to forgive those who have wronged us. Remember that we have to walk in the light in order for the blood of Jesus to cleanse us. Refusing to forgive your brother (which is the root of hatred) is how not to walk in the light (see 1 John 2:9).
-Pastor SD Abraham
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Yearly Bible Reading:Psalms 146-148 (In Devotional Audio)
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