Forgiven and Forgiveness
Forgiveness is practiced through forgiving.
It is an act in which the offender receives pardon.
Forgiveness is something we receive from God and others.
Forgiveness is also something we give to others.
The forgiveness of sins is one of the many blessings we receive from God as a result of Jesus’s finished work at the cross and the riches of His grace.
God’s forgiveness of our sins
Romans 5:25 reads, “He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.” This justification is received through faith. It is the remission of sin and absolution from guilt and punishment. It is described as an act of free grace by which God pardons the sinner and accepts him as righteous, on account of the atonement of Christ. (Romans 5:1-4, Ephesians 2:8, 2 Corinthians 5:19, John 3:17, Acts 2:38-39).
Jesus came as the final fulfilment of the need for the old testament Passover lambs.
He offered himself as a sacrifice for our sins once and for all. (Hebrews 7:27).
When we accept Jesus as the Lord of our lives we can live with the assurance that our sins have been forgiven. When John the Baptist saw Jesus he said, - “Behold, the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” - John 1:29.
Jesus became the final and ultimate sacrifice for sin for all time.
If you haven’t received Jesus as the Lord of your life and you feel like you have done things beyond forgiveness, I would like to encourage you today that you are exactly whom Jesus came for and died for.
Jesus says in Mark 2:17, “I have not come to call the righteous but sinners.”
Friend, there is no sin stronger than the blood of Jesus, no matter your sin, go to him today and ask for his forgiveness. Then turn your life around as a response and in true repentance. That is, change your way of thinking and your way of doing things (Acts 26:18).
Scripture tells us that we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and we are all justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus (Romans 3:23-24). The church is made up of people that have been redeemed from a sinful past. In scripture we find Mary Magdalene, described as “out of whom came seven demons” and we see that she was one of Jesus closest followers. Paul who describes himself as a man called by God had been a persecutor and murderer of Christians.
If you have known Jesus before and backslidden or you have never known him. No matter what you have done, God’s forgiveness is waiting for you. 1 John 1:9 reads, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Come to him as you are and ask him to come into your life today, he stands at the door of your heart knocking and is waiting to show you his mercy, kindness and forgiveness. Receive it today.
We all fall in various ways from time to time.
When we wrong others, our friends, family, co-workers, the way is to approach them, say sorry and ask them to forgive us for the hurt we have caused them.
When others wrong us, we in turn as believers and followers of Jesus must be quick to forgive and extend love to them through the act of forgiveness. Just as we ourselves have been forgiven by God of our many sins. As Colossians 3:13 teaches, “bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.”
Forgiveness both given and received is one of the most important ways of guarding our hearts from the enemy’s schemes. Forgiving others is so important. In teaching the disciples how to pray which is commonly known as the Lord’s prayer, Jesus teaches us that when we forgive other people when they sin against us, our heavenly father will also forgive us. But if we do not forgive others their sins, our father will not forgive us our sins (Matthew 6:14-15).
In addition to that, open wounds and areas of offence when left unattended can lead to bitterness which is a far deeper root to deal with. Other negative effects as a result of lack of forgiveness can be feelings of guilt, shame and condemnation.
In speaking to the church in Corinth with regards to those who had caused them grief, Paul says, - “Now whom you forgive anything, I also forgive. For if indeed I have forgiven anything, I have forgiven that one for your sakes in the presence of Christ, lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.” - 2 Corinthians 2:10-11
Pray with me
I ask that you forgive me of all my sins.
I give you my life Lord Jesus and I ask that you will show me the true way of life. Help me to turn my life around. I forgive all who have wronged me and I ask Lord that you forgive them too just as you have forgiven me. In Jesus name I ask and pray, Amen.
Further bible reading
Matthew 18:21-35, Luke 7:36-50, John 20:23