Showing posts with label forgiveness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label forgiveness. Show all posts

01 February 2021

A Few Thoughts about Luke 23:34

A Few Thoughts about Luke 23:34

Luke 23:34 EMTV Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." And dividing His garments, they cast lots.

Jesus’s prayer does not mean that these evil people have the sins forgiven and are now enjoying fellowship with God in heaven.

These evil people deserved to be killed instantly, but Jesus prays that this not happen. He prays for them to live longer in hopes that they might come to their senses, repent, believe, and trust in Jesus for salvation.

These evil people knew He was Messiah. They just didn’t like this Messiah but looked for a warrior type that would deliver them from Rome and let them sin (practice religion as they interpreted it).

This ignorance is because they didn’t know what any Messiah was doing by dying nor what this crucifixion meant in the future for Israel and their souls.

There is no such thing as forgive and forget. If a sin has been committed, it needs to be punished.

We pray for their salvation, but no one is required to stay in abuse or any other crime.

It is OK to flee. King David needed to flee from Saul, Elijah needed to flee from Ahab and Jezebel, the early believers needed to flee, etc. They were persecuted, threatened, and abused; all of which are reasons to flee.

It is OK to divorce.

A Few Thoughts about Luke 23:34

forgiveness, forgive and forget

27 October 2020

A Few Thoughts About Matthew 18

Matthew 18 has been a difficult passage for interpreters. So, I give my few thoughts on this chapter.

The Lord Jesus is speaking to Jews. These Jews are disciples. Matthew 18:1a NIV At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked…

He is teaching them some of the principles, worldview, and lifestyle of the Kingdom of Heaven, which is the same as the King of God. Compare Matthew 4:17 with Mark 1:15, etc. This is a kingdom where God rules. Eventually, Jesus will reign in Jerusalem and the universe will be the Kingdom of God. (You might want to read What is the Kingdom of Heaven?) (I don’t know anything about Bruce Colbert, so be aware).

The first principle the Lord Jesus teaches (verses 1-7) is who is the greatest in the Kingdom of God? Jesus gives no names but a principle. A principle is a law, doctrine, or assumption on which action or behavior is based (Source). Humans tend to ask who is the greatest. Jesus makes it clear that it is not what makes humans great on earth but what God considers great. Some things that make one great in the Kingdom of Heaven:

  • Poor in Spirit, meekness, hunger and thirst for righteousness, merciful, pure in heart, peacemakers, suffer for righteousness sake in Matthew 5:3-12

  • Doing and teaching God’s rules and righteousness in Matthew 5:19-20

  • Doing the will of God in Matthew 7:21

  • Humility, trust, and faith in Matthew 18:1, 3-4

  • Not being a hypocrite in Matthew 23:13 also see 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 and Galatians 5:21

  • The highest priority in our life is God’s kingdom and His righteousness in Matthew 6:33

  • Not trusting in money but faith in God in Mark 10:23-25

  • Being faithful and steadfast in faith towards God in Luke 9:62

  • Being born again, the new birth, by God because of faith and trust in Him in John 3:3-5

  • Righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit in Romans 14:17

Jesus teaches further that if a person does something to a child causing them to not believe the Gospel, that person will receive a severe penalty. It would be better to have a millstone hung around their neck and thrown into the sea to drown. An example might be someone claiming to be a Christian, be it a pastor, a youth pastor, a church worker, Sunday School teacher or whatever. This person of respect molests that child, which causes them to reject Christ when they are older. Even though that pastor, etc. might think of themselves as being great, even though that pastor, etc. is acclaimed by the congregation, that person is spiritually dead and an evangelist for satan causing someone to NOT believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The next section (verses 8-10) deals with obstacles to believe the gospel. I have read of more than one person who had gifted hands, say a musician or surgeon, who would not believe the gospel. When they had some tragedy and lost a hand, they experienced financial and emotional stress. This brought a situation where their heart was softened to listen to the gospel.

Next in verses 11-14, Jesus teaches His desire, longing, and effort to seek those who are lost. All humans are lost and perishing because of sin except the sinless Jesus. He is the Lamb of God (John 1:29) and the Passover Lamb (1 Corinthians 5:7) who paid the penalty for our sins, suffered for our sins, and taking the punishment for our breaking God’s laws.

In verses 15-20, the Lord Jesus deals with the topic of a sinning believer. The word church indicates that Jesus does not speak of our present-day church, for it didn’t exist until Pentecost. So, it must refer to a group of believers. Jesus is addressing His disciples. He is teaching a principle of the Kingdom of Heaven, so it can be applied to the church today. The church today is believers, not an organization.

Note the word brother which refers to one of common belief, not necessarily common family. Also note the word witness. This is someone who has firsthand knowledge of some offense. The issue is hopefully dealt with when the offended person tells the offender of their sin. If they repent (ask forgiveness and never do it again), then all is well. This repenting person is living as a Christian. If that person does not repent, then bring other witnesses. If the offender repents, all is well. If he/she does not repent still, then bring it before the group. If he/she repents, all is well. If not, then that person must be treated as if they are not a non-Christian. They may be a Christian, but they are acting and living like a non-Christian, so must be treated as such. The non-repenting person is not to be treated with abuse but with the attitude of wanting them to confess their sin and repent. Compare 1 Corinthians chapter 5.

A word of caution. Abusing church leaders like to isolate the one who has been abused from any witnesses of support. These false teachers and their supporters then abuse the abused. This has happened many times. Always have someone with you preferably a lawyer. A child who has been molested must never have to experience this situation. Refer the molestation to law enforcement.

Some things to remember about this passage.

B1 There are false witnesses. Matthew 26:59-61 NLT Inside, the leading priests and the entire high council were trying to find witnesses who would lie about Jesus, so they could put him to death. 60 But even though they found many who agreed to give false witness, they could not use anyone's testimony. Finally, two men came forward 61 who declared, "This man said, 'I am able to destroy the Temple of God and rebuild it in three days.

B2 There are evil counseling methods where the abused/molested most face the accused alone or in front of “church leaders.” Avoid this at all costs. Always have a witness with you. Don’t be intimidated.

Verses 21-35 are about forgiveness and the one who can forgive. God is the only one who can forgive sin. There is no such thing as forgive and forget. The abused/molested have scars and are unable to forget. Such talk is the counsel of at best ignorant but more likely abusers themselves.

When we ask God to forgive our sins, He does, IF we are repent. Words are cheap. A person’s life speaks louder than words. For an example read about King Manasseh in 2 Kings 21 and 2 Chronicles 33. As God has forgiven us, we forgive others. Forgiveness means to not seek revenge. Reporting a crime is not revenge. Only God forgives sins. Sins leave scars on us and on those who were wronged. The devil does much harm by reminding us of our past sins. Compare the Apostle Paul as in Acts 22:4, 1 Corinthians 15:9, Galatians 1:13, and Philippians 3:6. Some interpret Paul’s thorn in the flesh to be satan’s reminding Paul of this.

God’s forgiveness can be revoked as in Matthew 18:32-35 NLT Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, 'You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me. 33 Shouldn't you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?' 34 Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt. 35 "That's what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart.

The Lord Jesus teaches the principles, and many times gives an illustration of that truth as we read in Matthew 18:21-35.


B1 What does it mean to be great in the Kingdom of Heaven?

B2 How does one achieve that greatness?

B3 Why does God value character traits and attitudes instead of power, authority, prestige, and financial greatness?

B4 Why do people who are molested or abused often reject the Gospel?

B5 What should a person do who is molested or abused? Report it to law enforcement. It is a crime, and you’ll be doing your part to stop this evil person.

B6 Explain forgiveness of sins.

Proverbs 18:12 NLT Haughtiness goes before destruction; humility precedes honor.

Romans 8:13-14 AFV Because if you are living according to the flesh, you shall die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you shall live. 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God.

2 Peter 3:9 NRSV The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some think of slowness, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance.

Proverbs 21:2 GNB You may think that everything you do is right, but remember that the LORD judges your motives.

Psalms 25:8 GNB Because the LORD is righteous and good, he teaches sinners the path they should follow.

04 September 2018

A Few Thoughts on Forgiveness

A Few Thoughts on Forgiveness

I don’t like the word forgiveness, because abusers, etc. use that word to manipulate others. I don’t know what word would be appropriate.
A1 Forgiveness is 2 fold
B1 God to humans
B2 Human to human (this would include forgiving ourselves to live in peace after God has forgiven)
A2 Forgiveness is costly.
B1 Sinning, law breaking, must be punished. The lawbreaker must be punished.
C1 Romans 6:23 MKJV For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
C2 Mark 1:15 EMTV and saying, "The time has been fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel."
C3 Matthew 11:20-22 LEB Then he began to reproach the towns in which the majority of his miracles had been done, because they did not repent: 21 "Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 Nevertheless I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and for Sidon on the day of judgment than for you!
C4 Hebrews 9:22 NRSV Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.
C5 John 3:16 EMTV For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.
A3 Some sins are crimes in society. They must be punished. Example, a man is domestically violent to his wife. This is criminal. It is NOT forgive and forget. The wife needs to or obtains assistance of a lawyer, law enforcement, or both to stop him. The abused is not seeking revenge, for a crime was committed. This crime is against God’s law and government law.
A4 Some things to be forgiven are ignorant mistakes or no harm was done. Example, you buy something from me, and I shortchange you. Later, I realize my error, correct it by giving back the money I owe you, and ask for forgiveness. You forgive instead of seeking revenge.
A5 Forgiveness does not mean someone gets away with their evil towards us.
A6 Forgiveness does mean that we free ourselves from revenge, giving revenge to God, who will deal with and punish that person/s.
A7 Vengeance is not always forgotten by God’s people. Consider:
B1 The Tribulation saints: Revelation 6:10 GNB They shouted in a loud voice, "Almighty Lord, holy and true! How long will it be until you judge the people on earth and punish them for killing us?"
B2 The parable of the persistent widow: Luke 18:7-8 WELWon't God avenge his own elect who cry out day and night to him, and yet he bears patiently with them. 8 "I tell you that he will avenge them quickly. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?"
B3 False preachers and teachers: Galatians 5:11-12 GNB92 But as for me, my friends, if I continue to preach that circumcision is necessary, why am I still being persecuted? If that were true, then my preaching about the cross of Christ would cause no trouble. I wish that the people who are upsetting you would go all the way; let them go on and castrate themselves!
A8 Even though people pray for forgiveness of others, God still punishes.
B1 The Lord Jesus: Luke 23:33-34 WEL When they had come to the place, which is called Calvary, they crucified him and the criminals, one on the right hand and the other on the left. 34 Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they don't know what they are doing." Then they parted his clothes and cast lots.
B2 Stephen: Acts 7:59-60 WEL They stoned Stephen, who was calling out to God and saying, "Lord Jesus receive my spirit." 60 He fell down and shouted with a loud voice, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them." After saying that, he fell asleep.
A9 Forgiveness of enemies will certainly add to the severity of judgment those enemies will face: Romans 12:20 WEL Therefore, if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink, for in doing so you will heap coals of fire on his head.
A10 Forgiveness does not mean doing nothing. Somethings are crimes and the person must be stopped. Some people we trust in as physicians, nurses, lawyers, etc. can hurt and take advantage of us. When they do, action must be taken against them, so they will not harm someone else. For example, a surgeon may be sloppy and careless in surgery. When they hurt a patient, they must be stopped, so the person or family files charges or suits. Realize, this is when he/she were sloppy or careless, harm was committed intentionally or in malpractice (I ain’t no lawyer), not just a bad outcome.
A11 Forgiveness should always be prayed, but punishment expected:
B1 Psalm 28 especially verse 4: Psalms 28:4 GNB92 Punish them for what they have done, for the evil they have committed. Punish them for all their deeds; give them what they deserve!
B2 Jeremiah 15:15 GNB92 Then I said, “LORD, you understand. Remember me and help me. Let me have revenge on those who persecute me. Do not be so patient with them that they succeed in killing me. Remember that it is for your sake that I am insulted.
B3 Jeremiah 18:21 GNB92 But now, LORD, let their children starve to death; let them be killed in war. Let the women lose their husbands and children; let the men die of disease and the young men be killed in battle.
A12 I guess, for me anyway, I will pray they are forgiven (may they be born again), but I will turn them over to God and pray they are punished to stop them from hurting again.

A13 What word should I use? I don’t have a clue.

23 March 2017

About Forgiveness. Forgiving that evil person

Often when I encourage others (and myself), I ask them if they have forgiven that person. The most frequent reply is, "I can (or will not) forgive what they have done to me." I then explain that forgiveness doesn't mean that person gets away with their evil deed. It does mean that it is turned over to God to deal with.

The Lord Jesus showed this: (Luke 23:34 [MKJV]) And Jesus said, Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do. And parting His clothing, they cast lots.

Likewise Stephen as he was dying because he was a Christian said: (Acts 7:60 [MKJV]) And kneeling down, he cried with a loud voice, Lord, do not lay this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

In these passages there is no hint that eternal forgiveness from God is meant. It is only to turn over that evil deed to God for Him to deal with that evil person.

A wonderful article I found explaining various myths of forgiveness includes this:

What Forgiveness Isn't

6 myths that may be keeping you from letting go.

by Denise George

I listened quietly as my friend Jamie told me the frank details of the sexual abuse she'd suffered as a child. 
"I hate my father!" she blurted out. "He abused me for more than a decade!" Jamie cried. 
"But my pastor said if I want to heal from my childhood pain, I have to forgive." 
"What did you tell your pastor?" I asked. 
"I told him I could never forgive my father, that I didn't want to forgive him, that no one—not even God—would expect me to forgive him!" Jamie told me all the reasons that kept her from forgiving her abusive father. I'd heard many of them before. In fact, I'd used some of them two years earlier, when a friend I'd trusted to keep a confidence told several women in my Sunday school class about a painful circumstance I was going through. I felt betrayed by my friend—as I should have. But forgive her? That was the last thing I wanted to do! I dropped out of the Sunday school class and avoided her at church. But a year later, when I reread what the apostle Paul said about forgiveness, his familiar words touched my heart in a special way: "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you" (Ephesians 4:32, my emphasis). 
As I meditated on that verse, I knew I'd been...

You can read the rest here:  

27 February 2017

Types of Forgiveness

Ever wonder about forgiveness? If we forgive someone, does that mean God forgives them, too?

Barbara Roberts, a writer at the web site A Cry for Justice has written such an article to answer this question. It is a good read.

Would it be be an act of unforgiveness to decide not to eat with that hypocrite? That reviler? That person who holds to a form of godliness but denies its power? Would it be a lack of Christian love?
The answer to these questions is...
Read the rest here: 

26 January 2017

A Clean Slate

Theme: A covering for sin

Know: God did not abandon His people. He gave them hope for the future and a covering for sin.
Think: Always be conscious for the cost of forgiveness of sin.
Do: Love and serve Jesus because He paid the enormous cost of our sin.

Scripture: Numbers 15:1-31

Notes and questions:
B2 Setting= the wilderness of Paran
B3 Outline
  • The special offering. (This is when they first enter the land). Numbers 15:1-16
  • The yearly harvest offering Numbers 15:17-21
  • Sacrifices for sin Numbers 15:22-31
    • Unintentional Numbers 15:22-29
    • Intentional Numbers 15:30-31
  • The wood gatherer Numbers 15:32-36
  • The tassels on the robes Numbers 15:37-41
B4 The gist of this is for us to learn to be thankful.
  • Our parents had to teach us to be thankful.
  • We have to teach our children the same.
  • God is no different. He needed to teach the children of Israel to be thankful.
  • It is a demand, but it is to teach them.
  • We all liked to have someone say, “Thank you.”
B5 Numbers 15:2, who was this law given to? In Numbers 15:15, to whom did the law apply.
B6 What is the significance of the words “when you come into the land?” (Numbers 15:2)
B7 Many consider the offering in Exodus 15:3 to be a peace offering. See Leviticus 17:5.

Derived from the root word “Shalam” (H7999) meaning to be safe, it was an offering of giving thanks, and were divide into 3 types of peace offerings (Leviticus 7:11-16)
  1. Thanksgiving for received salvation(Leviticus 7:12)
  2. a fulfillment of a vow – when expected salvation is received(Leviticus 7:16)
  3. voluntary offering of giving thanks(Leviticus 7:16) – as an expression of rejoicing with God, as in the case of Solomon at the dedication of the Temple (1 Kings 8:63)

The peace offering consisted of a part of an animal sacrificed to God through fire, part given to the priest as food and the rest eaten as a festive meal in fellowship.
The offerer could bring an ox, sheep or goat from his flock(Leviticus 3:1,6,12) but it would need to be without blemish. There was more freedom of choice as a male or female could be offered up, but there was no provision for a pigeon or dove as the whole point of the offering was the sacrificial meal, and a chance to join with God in a time of fellowship and thanksgiving.

The peace offering was also accompanied by 4 varieties of cakes(Leviticus 7:11-14)

The process of sacrifice
Similar to the burnt offering, the offerer brought the animal to the door of the tabernacle, laid hands on it, identifying himself with it, and killed it. The priests sprinkled the blood, after which the offerer removed all the fat of the animal as part of God’s burnt offering(Leviticus 3:3-5,9) set forth as a sweet savour to Him. The fat was prescribed as the food of YHVH offered up by fire(Leviticus 3:16). The second portion was given to the sons of Aaron as per the instructions of God(Leviticus 7:34, 10:15) The remainder was used in a sacrificial meal eaten inside the temple court with all of the offerers family including his servants(Deuteronomy 12:11,18) with much rejoicing(Deuteronomy 12:7). This is what Paul alludes to in 1 Corinthians 10:18. They were having communion with God. The meal was to be partaken on the same day, but could be eaten the next day if it was for a vow or a voluntary offering. Whatever was left had to be burnt with fire on the third day, and nothing left or eaten(Leviticus 7:15-18).

If the sacrificed meat came in contact with something unclean, it could not be eaten but burnt. All who ate it had to be ceremonially clean as well. Any who broke these precepts were said to be cut off from His people by God Himself(Leviticus  7:19-21).

The fat was not to be eaten as it was God’s portion, and the blood was not to be eaten(Leviticus 7:22-27) as it was used for atonement and had life(Leviticus 17:11).
B8 The amounts (best estimates) in today’s English are:
  • Grain offering
    • One tenth ephah= ~2 quarts (2.2 liters) (2 pounds) flour
    • One fourth hin= ~1 quart (1 liter) (2 pints) olive oil and wine
  • Ram
    • Two tenths ephah= ~4 quarts (4.4 liters) (4 pounds) flour
    • One third hin= ~One third gallon (1.3 liters) (3 pints) olive oil and wine
  • Bull
    • 3 tenths ephah= ~6 quarts (6.6 liters) (6 pounds) flour
    • One half hin= ~2 quarts (2 liters) (4 pints) olive oil and wine
B9 What insight does Acts 15:6-11 bring to our passage?
6 Both the apostles and the elders met together to deliberate about this matter. 7 After there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “Brothers, you know that some time ago God chose me to preach to the Gentiles so they would hear the message of the gospel and believe. 8 And God, who knows the heart, has testified to them by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, 9 and he made no distinction between them and us, cleansing their hearts by faith. 10 So now why are you putting God to the test by placing on the neck of the disciples a yoke that neither our ancestors nor we have been able to bear? 11 On the contrary, we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they are. Acts 15:6-11
B10 Does this make us appreciate the work of Jesus Christ more? In what way?
18 On the one hand a former command is set aside because it is weak and useless, 19 for the law made nothing perfect. On the other hand a better hope is introduced, through which we draw near to God. 20 And since this was not done without a sworn affirmation – for the others have become priests without a sworn affirmation, 21 but Jesus did so with a sworn affirmation by the one who said to him, “The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind, ‘You are a priest forever’” – 22 accordingly Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant. 23 And the others who became priests were numerous, because death prevented them from continuing in office, 24 but he holds his priesthood permanently since he lives forever. 25 So he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. 26 For it is indeed fitting for us to have such a high priest: holy, innocent, undefiled, separate from sinners, and exalted above the heavens. 27 He has no need to do every day what those priests do, to offer sacrifices first for their own sins and then for the sins of the people, since he did this in offering himself once for all. 28 For the law appoints as high priests men subject to weakness, but the word of solemn affirmation that came after the law appoints a son made perfect forever. Hebrews 7:18-33
B11 What does God want to show every human about God’s standards? ...about sin?
B12 After giving the warning passage to Israel, someone deliberately, willfully, broke God’s law.
B13 What is the purpose of the Law? 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. 21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (Romans 3:20-23, KJV)
B14 What contrast do you see between God’s and man’s efforts in chapters 14 and 15?
  • God does not fail, man does.
  • God is faithful, humanity is not.
  • God keeps and guarantees His promises, humanity cannot.
  • Humanity often forfeits everything, but God’s plan still will happen.
B15 Numbers 15:37-38, Do we have to wear special clothing today? (The Israelites were required to wear blue tassels on the edge of their clothing). This was to remind Israel that they were to keep God’s law and not follow sinful things. What can we do to remind ourselves to keep God’s ways?
B16 What starts the downfall of all humans? See: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. (Romans 1:21, KJV)
B17 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, (2Tim 3:2, KJV)

1 A Psalm of praise. Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands. 2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing. 3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. 4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. 5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations. (Psalms 100:1-5, KJV)

02 December 2016

A Devotion from Luke 7:41-50

Luke 7:41-50

(41) "There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. (42) And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?" (43) Simon answered and said, "I suppose the one whom he forgave more." And He said to him, "You have rightly judged." (44) Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. (45) You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in. (46) You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil. (47) Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little." (48) Then He said to her, "Your sins are forgiven." (49) And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, "Who is this who even forgives sins?" (50) Then He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you. Go in peace."

We learn from this:
  1. Jesus can forgive sins
  2. Jesus forgave this sins before the cross showing us that the OT saints had forgiveness in looking forward to Messiah, our Passover Lamb.
  3. The Lord Jesus did not require her to keep the Law or practice it. It is not even mentioned. What is mentioned is "faith," which is believing God. Faith in Jesus brought forgiveness of sins.
  4. The Gospel has been, is, and always will be the same. There is only one Gospel.
  5. Some have more sins than others.
  6. Those who are forgiven much often love more.
  7. Jesus can forgive a few sins as well as many sins.
  8. Religion does not save.
  9. Keeping the Law, as the Pharisee did, does not forgive sins. This is because the heart is evil and desperately wicked.
  10. We have peace with God, because of the forgiveness that He gives.
  11. We are now to obey Him.

26 January 2015

Parents Need to Ask Forgiveness, too

A message from Benjamin Watson


Today I had to ask my son for his forgiveness. Like many parents we've tried to teach our children how to treat others how they would like to be treated. We've talked about loving, sharing, and respecting each other. We teach our kids to bless others who may be less fortunate. They routinely ask us for ways they can help the homeless and hungry among us. As Christians, we teach them about the God who created them, and who sent his Son in order to bring them eternal life and relationship with himself. We pray together as a family at night and attend church regularly. Sounds pretty good huh? We are intentional about instilling values in our children because we want them to enjoy proper fellowship with their fellow man as well as their Heavenly Father. We want them to become well rounded, mature adults who are emotionally, physically and spiritually developed. AND most importantly, we don't want them to HIT, SPIT AT, FIGHT, or BITE each other, or do anything else that causes Mommy or Daddy to yell, "STOP IT" 45 times!!!!

Every few nights we sing songs before bed. One favorite goes like this,

"Be ye kind, one to another, tender hearted, forgiving one another even as Christ has forgiven you. E-phe-sians four thirty two, ba dum, ba dum, E-phe-sians four thirty two, ba dum, ba dum." (Ephesians 4:32)

Honestly, when we sing that song I'm hoping THEY internalize those words and I don't have to discipline, correct or separate anyone for at least a couple hours. 
But today, I was the one who wasn't kind, or tender hearted and had to ask forgiveness from my child. Sparing all the details, I will say I became agitated because my son, instead of asking for help to get his clothes off for bath time began to cry uncontrollably out of frustration. I instructed him and implored him about what he should do and how he should ask, to no avail. The tears were in full force. At this point I became angry, my tone changed, and while I never insulted him (calling him a crybaby) I was not communicating with him in a kind, tender hearted or loving way. I was the antithesis of that song and that verse.

After quickly bathing and dressing him he went downstairs and I went to my room, convicted by the Holy Spirit. And so, I, the daddy, the teacher, the "mature" one, went downstairs and begged for my son's forgiveness. He gave me one of the best hugs I've ever had. Thank God children don't hold grudges very long!

Sometimes, parenting will drive you to your limits. These children that give us so much joy can drive us to our wits end, testing every fiber of our patience. As we teach them right and wrong we must ALWAYS be willing to DEMONSTRATE right and wrong. All the church songs, Bible verses, core values and morals will mean nothing to them as they grow older if we don't live them out in our daily lives. This includes admitting our shortcomings. We must be willing to humble ourselves and ask them for forgiveness when we mistreat them. In word, thought or deed, it will happen. Even the most devoted parents will fall short of perfection at times. When this happens we must be willing to show our children, that while they must obey us, we in turn must obey God. And if that means a 34 year old telling a 3 year old he's sorry, and asking for forgiveness. So be it.

Now I'm the one in tears.