Saturday, November 23, 2013

Another Teaching About Forgiveness

Some preachers suggest that we must forgive other people, especially our parents, because if we retain or hold onto the sins of other people, we will end up manifesting those same perversions in our own lives.

While this teaching is understandable and well-intentioned, this line of thinking brings people into bondage once again, neglecting a few key elements about our New Creation standing in Christ Jesus.

First of all, when we believe on Jesus, we are adopted into a new, better, and eternal family:

"Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. 7In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;" (Ephesians 1: 5-7)

We are sons and daughter of God Most High, a standing which we receive in Christ:

"But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: 7That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. 8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:" (Ephesians 2: 4-8)

We are in Christ, seated above everything in the universe, and under Jesus' feet everything in the universe has been placed.

We have a new standing, blessed with all spiritual blessings (Ephesians 1:3), and so Paul prays that we receive a growing revelation of all that we have in Christ (Ephesians 1: 17-20) and that we receive a growing understanding in our entire intellect to understand Christ within us and God's love for us in Christ (Ephesians 3: 16-19)

When we understand how greatly blessed, highly favored, and deeply loved we are in Christ, then forgiving others, or more precisely being gracious to others, is as easy as water rolling down a hill:

"31Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." (Ephesians 4: 31-32)

We do not forgive so that we will not repeat the same evil perversions in our own lives. We forgive because we have been so graciously forgiven ourselves, and we can do this because we have received a new life, a new identity, and we have become new creations putting on a new man:

"22That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; 23And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 24And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness." (Ephesians 4: 22-24)

This new man is Christ, and we have all been placed in Him. So, if we are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5: 17), we should no longer think of ourselves living out the sins of our parents, since we have received an eternal Father, a new life, and thus we are invited to renew our minds to the truth of who we are in Christ.

And forgiveness becomes so easy to forgive!

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