FORGIVENESS


FORGIVE: 1. To give up resentment (the desire to pay someone back) or the desire to punish; to stop being angry with someone; to pardon someone's offense. 2. to give up all claim to punish or exact a penalty for an offence; to overlook. 3. To cancel or remit.

Jeremiah 31:31-34 Verse 34:.... I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

This section deals with the sin of Israel breaking a covenant with God. This speaks about a time when God will make a new covenant with Israel. But notice it will be a covenant in the heart. That was why He sent Jesus into the world. But they didn't receive him at that time, so what God was going to do for the Jews, He did for the rest of the world. Notice He writes His laws in the heart, and what does He do about sin? He forgives, and forgets

For us, when we first try to forgive, it usually is imperfect, so we still remember their sins. That is, their sins against us seem to keep comming up and bringing pain to our hearts. This is the power of sin: to hurt us. Still, as often as they come back to us, we will go in prayer to the Lord and forgive. Each time we take the remembrance of someone's sin against us to the Lord and forgive them, the power of those sins to hurt us grows weaker, and our forgiveness becomes more and more like Jesus Christ's until one day the memories no longer come to us with the power to make us angry or bitter or hurt. In other words, NO MORE PAIN. When this happens, our forgiveness is complete. The joy we share with the Lord is twofold. First, we know the joy of walking in the Power of the Lord (taking away the hurt and healing us), and secondly, we rejoice in the fact that in yet one more way, we have become more like our beloved Jesus.

Luke 23:34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them;for they know not what they do.

Here is the reason Jesus prayed for his persecutors: they didn't know what they were doing. And this is the reason we pray for those who persecute us. They don't know what they are doing. An unconverted person can no more help hurting others, than a saved person can help loving others. We do according to our nature. When we receive Christ, we receive a brand new nature. It is the nature of Christ to love; it is the nature of the Devil, to hurt and destroy. When we were sinners, we also had the nature to hurt and destroy. We couldn't help ourselves. We were ignorant of the true power of life. So also are they, who hurt us and cause us pain, and try to destroy our well-being. They are like so many cattle. A cow can't know the way of human life, and neither can an unsaved man. Just as a cow can't walk on two legs, neither can a sinner walk upright in heart. WE WILL FORGIVE them, AND PRAY FOR THEM to be saved.