The Art of Forgiveness


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The Art of Forgiveness

  1. 1. Wednesday NightStudy Series5/13/2013Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas 76543www.cucockilleen.org1“A disciple is not greater than his teacher,but everyone when fully trained will belike his teacher” Luke 6:40Lesson Author K.Brady
  2. 2. Forgiveness5/13/2013Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas 76543www.cucockilleen.org2Topics below to be discussed (06/13/12) What is Forgiveness? Understanding Forgiveness Can We Withhold it? Forgiving Self Forgive and Forget? What happens if I don’t Forgive
  3. 3. 5/13/20133Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas What is forgiveness?ForgivenessGeneral Definition - give up resentment of or claim to requital for an insultto grant relief from payment of a debtto cease to feel resentment against (an offender) : pardon …forgive ones enemiesAccording to the Bible – it means to remit, release, let go or send away.Also means Freedom, Pardon, Remission, Relieve, Release (aphiēmi),(apoluō)In Bible appears 7 times.Word “Forgive” appears 56 times.
  4. 4. 5/13/20134Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas While non-Christians may have their own steps and formulas on how to forgive,from a Christian perspective it should be easy to understand. Quite simply, the Bible teaches that if we won‟t forgive other people, then God will notforgive us. Read Matthew 6:14-15 This Seems like a very straight-forward concept, yet many Christians don‟t getthis and even when they hear it, they don‟t believe it. Forgiveness is pretty black and white. Fundamental Christianity 101; if you don’t understand forgivenessyou don’t understand Christianity.Forgiveness Understanding Forgiveness
  5. 5. 5/13/20135Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas Two types of forgiveness appear in the Bible: 1. (Divine Forgiveness) - Gods pardon of our sins. Conditional upon repentance. 2. (Human Forgiveness) - Our obligation to pardon others. Commanded andNon-Conditional.Forgiveness Understanding Forgiveness (Cont)
  6. 6. 5/13/20136Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas Read Matthew 18:21-35 Jesus talks about forgiveness by relating a parable about a servant who owed his master alot of money—let‟s say the equivalent of a million dollars. The master comes to collect andthe servant begs to be let off the hook because he can‟t repay it. So the master reconsiders, shows mercy and lets him off; erasing the considerable debt thatthe man owed. But then that very same servant turns around and finds another guy whoowes him some small amount let‟s say $100. He starts choking the guy, demanding his money,then throws the guy in jail till he pays him what he owes. When the master hears what the servant did, he calls him back and rebukes him,. Lets discuss the dynamic between the two.Forgiveness The Wicked Servant Parable
  7. 7. 5/13/20137Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas You are fooling yourself if you think you can remain bitter and unforgiving toward someone elseand have that be okay with God. The Bible warns not to “deceive yourself” and I truly think thisis one of the areas that people are full of self-deception. As Christians one thing that is totally non-negotiable for us is forgiveness. As Christians we do not have the luxury of remaining bitter, vengeful, unforgiving andholding grudges. I laid out the scriptural commands that instruct us on forgiveness and showedthe gravity of the situation when we do not forgive others. Knowing that God will not forgiveus if we don‟t forgive others is a pretty sobering thought and should be all the motivation weneed. Yet we often have difficulty with forgiving those who have transgressed against usand hurt us.Forgiveness Lets Not fool Ourselves
  8. 8. 5/13/20138Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas The Bible teaches us that God withholds forgiveness towards peoplewho are not repentant. Read 2 Kings 24:4, Lamentations 3:42, Luke 13:3-5, Acts 17:30, Romans 2:5. God is able to do this because of His very nature: He is sinless. He is perfect. He is holy. God will not tolerate sin.Forgiveness God can withhold his Forgiveness, can We??
  9. 9. 5/13/20139Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas As Christians we are commanded by Christ to forgive others who sin againstus when they are repentant if we are to expect God to forgive us when wesin against Him. Read Matthew 6:14-15; 18:23-35; Mark 11:25, Luke 17:3-4,Ephesians 4:31-32, Colossians 3:13). We do NOT nor has God authorized us a license to withhold forgiveness!!! For us to play God by refusing to offer forgiveness is an act of judgment onour part, and Jesus tells us that God will judge us according to the way we‟vejudged others (Matthew 7:2).Forgiveness God can withhold his Forgiveness, can We?? (cont)
  10. 10. 5/13/201310Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas• Matthew 6:14-15 does not teach that our eternal destiny is based on our forgiving other people;however, it does teach that our relationship with God will be damaged if we refuse topardon those who have offended us. The Bible is clear that God pardons sin byHis grace based on Christ‟s work on the cross alone, not on man‟s actions. To be sure, an unforgiving spirit is a sin and should be confessed to God. If we haveunforgiveness in our hearts against someone else, then we are acting in a way that is notpleasing to God, making our prayers and a proper living relationship with Him difficult.God will not hear our prayers unless we also show ourselves ready to grant forgiveness. We should forgive others because God, through Christ, has forgiven us. | We cannot possibly walk with God in true fellowship if we refuse to forgive others. It is inconceivable that someone who has truly experienced Gods forgiveness could refuseto grant forgiveness to others.!!!!! Read Ephesians 4:32Forgiveness What Happens if I Don’t Forgive
  11. 11. 5/13/201311Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas• When we ask for God‟s forgiveness based upon Christ having already paid for our sins and ourhaving trusted in Him as Savior and Lord, He forgives us. Read 1 John 1:9.• However, even though we are released from the bondage to sin we canstill choose to wallow in it and act as though we are not freed from it. Likewise with guilty feelings,we can accept the fact that we are forgiven in Christ, or we can believe the devil‟s lie that we are still guiltyand should therefore feel guilty. Free Yourselves….Read Romans 8:1• The Bible says that when God forgives us, He “remembers our sins no more" Jeremiah 31:34.This does not mean that the all-knowing God forgets because He forgives us. Rather, He choosesnot to bring up our sin to Himself or others. When our former sins come to mind, we can choose todwell upon them (with the resulting guilty feelings), or we can choose to fill our minds with thoughts ofthe awesome God who forgave us and thank and praise Him for it.• Forgiveness can set you free.• You may not forget the pain, but forgiveness can break the wall that has been blocking you in life,providing you with more opportunities for love and friendship.• Read (Philippians 4:8) - Thought Replacement• Sadly, there are people who don‟t forgive themselves because they really don‟t want to forget theirformer sins or they allow the spirit of guilt to take hold and disrupt their connection with the Lord.Forgiveness Forgiving YourselfHow should a Christian deal with feelingsof guilt regarding past sins?
  12. 12. 5/13/201312Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas Forgiveness is NOT tied to EMOTION!!!! Many times people have trouble forgiving because they believe that it‟s tied to emotions ormemory and they think they have to stop feeling or stop remembering in order to forgive.Not true. The first thing you have to understand about forgiveness is that is has nothing to do withyour emotions. You may feel the emotional pain of what that other person did to you till theday you die—it has nothing to do with forgiveness. Second, forgiveness has nothing to do with erasing your memory. You may remember whatthat person did to you till the day you die.Forgiveness is simply this: a decision to let it go.Forgiveness Forgive and Forget Let it Go! Give it to God in Prayer!!
  13. 13. 5/13/201313Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas The Greek word that translates to “forgiveness” is aphieeme,” literally “to send off,” “to release,” or “to let go.” This means forgiveness is the act of sending away incidents thatcause offense to brew in us. It means we can‟t keep focusing on the wrong done to us.Forgiveness is an act.This is an example of forgiveness: „I forgive you. I will never use it against you in the future.I will never speak of it again to you or to anyone else.” When you forgive, you decide to release the person from his or her guilt, period.You may remember the offense repeatedly at first. That‟s okay. The commitment toforgive a person is a commitment to “send away” the incident every time it reappears in your mind. Once the apostle Peter asked Jesus, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me,and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up toseven times, but up to seventy times seven.”That‟s 490 times.Forgiveness Forgive and Forget Let it Go! Give it to God in Prayer!!
  14. 14. 5/13/201314Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas When a person does something that really hurts you, you will naturally think about it over andover again. Practicing the principle of forgiving someone 490 times a day means every time youthink about what that person did to you, you prayerfully give it to God. The choice to forgivemeans we keep forgiving. Over time you will find the incident losing strength. Read Amos 1:3-13 for background on Peters Question. The Jewish rabbis at the time taught that forgiving someone more than three times was unnecessary,citing Amos 1:3-13 where God forgave Israel‟s enemies three times, then punished them.By offering forgiveness more than double that of the Old Testament example, Peterperhaps expected extra commendation from the Lord. When Jesus responded that forgivenessshould be offered four hundred and ninety times, far beyond that which Peter was proposing,it must have stunned the disciples who were listening. Although they had been with Jesusfor some time, they were still thinking in the limited terms of the law, rather than in theunlimited terms of grace.Forgiveness Forgiveness is NOT tied to EMOTION (Cont.)!!!!
  15. 15. 5/13/201315Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas 76543www.cucockilleen.orgRefusing to forgive another doesn’t make right the wrong, nor does it even the score orsupply vengeance. It only hurts the one who refuses to forgive. Unforgiveness is liketaking poison in hopes that the other guy will die. And it is literally like a toxic poison inyour body. It will make you sick and destroy you, your life and your relationships Jesustaught that without forgiveness, your very relationship to God is doomed. And I canassure you that without forgiveness, your marriage is doomed.See, you don‟t have to erase your feelings or memories. Forgiveness is not amnesia;it‟s intentionally choosing to let the offense go. When God forgives us He never bringsit up again. The Bible says he throws it in the sea of forgetfulness.Do you really think that God can’t remember?Forgiveness You have to Let it Go!!!
  16. 16. 5/13/2013Central Union Church of Christ, 3202 WestcliffRd #100 Killeen Texas 76543www.cucockilleen.org16Forgiveness Lesson End more topical lessons visit: