We Have Been Given A Way To Get Rid Of Anger! The problem is, we don’t like the way we have been given, but it is the best! It really is the only meaningful and productive way to accomplish the task. Are you ready for it? Are you sure you’re ready for it? Okay – here it is: Forgiveness! Forgiveness is the way to take on and take out anger and its devastating impact upon your life and the lives of those that you love.
When you can’t forgive yourself – life is filled with guilt and despair! When you won’t forgive others – life is filled with bitterness and anger! You can’t or won’t enjoy life and you don’t want anyone else to enjoy it either! We try to punish those that hurt us and end up destroying ourselves!
Jesus gives us “A Little Lesson On Forgiveness!” in Matthew 18:21-35, it says: 21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times. 23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. 26 “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go. 28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded. 29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’ 30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened. 32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. 35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”
Forgiveness is a need that we all have! Jesus is making the point that earning forgiveness is impossible! The servant in this story owed his master 10,000 talents -10,000 Bags of gold! There was no way, he would ever be able to repay it! In a life time of working, he could never be good enough to earn enough to repay what he owed his master!
The Bottom Line: We all need forgiveness, but not a one of us can earn or deserve it for ourselves! (Isa. 64:6 = says that our most righteous acts are as filthy rags!) Justification does not and cannot come from man. Justification comes from God! The purpose of God Word is to reveal our need for God’s justification!
Forgiveness Is Free! God does not require penance, but He does require repentance! Repentance is an act of faith! It is our response to the call of God to lay down our old, messed up life, so that we might take up our new life created for us by God!
We don’t repent because we fear hell, we repent because we see God and His goodness! Repentance is all about getting the something better that God created you for! Forgiveness is complete, because the debt is forgotten!
We love to revisit the graves and memorial markers of past sins and failures! There is just one problem: Our sins do not reside there! We want to hold onto what God has let go of!
There are two important things to remember here: 1.) There must be genuine repentance! (God will judge the genuineness!) 2.) Forgiven sin is intentionally forgotten! (An on purpose act of letting go!)
The Scriptures have this to say about God and His forgiveness:
Micah 7:18-19 ”18 Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. 19 You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.”
And then we read in Psalm 103:11-13 “11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; 12 as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us. 13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;”
And in John 8:34-36 “34 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”
Forgiveness Requires Forgiveness! When you really get what God’s forgiveness means – it changes everything! You can’t help it – you must forgive others or it’s just not right! When you accepted God’s grace, mercy, forgiveness and love, you give up, surrender whatever little bit you have left, so that you could take in all that He has for you! When you really get this – you will be glad you did!