To forgive is simply to pardon, or to overlook an offence by another and treat the offender as not guilty. God was the first to forgive and is the best example for us to follow. In this lesson we will look at four different areas of forgiveness.
God Forgiving Man
He started it with Adam and Eve
He has always been willing to forgive anyone who repented and were obedient, Manasseh [2 Chron. 33:1-13]
Many mighty men of the Old Testament were blessed by God’s Forgiveness
David, Jonah, Samson, and Abraham who together were guilty of murder, disobedience, adultery, fornication and lying.
His forgiveness continues today [1 John 2:1-2]
His last words on the cross expressed it [Luke23:34]
He is faithful to forgive you [1 John 1:9]
He has provided a way for the lost [Col. 1:14]
Man Forgiving Man
Remember our example [Luke 23:34]
God has forgiven us and therefore we are to do as he did, [Eph.4:32, Col.3:12-13]
Be very careful with the “Forgive to be forgiven” doctrine: [Matt.6:12,14-15], [Matt.18:23-35], [Mark 11:25-26], [Luke 6:37], None of these is a requirement for Church Age salvation where you are saved and forgiven by faith.
But your unforgiving heart can affect your fellowship with God and man.
Not only does God want us to forgive others but to do it over and over if necessary, [Luke 17:42-48] and [Matt.18:21-22]
Man Forgiving Himself
Have you ever felt that you have done something so wrong that God would never forgive you?
God said that if we confess a thing as sin, he would forgive us [1 John 1:9]
To assume that a particular sin of ours is too evil for God to forgive is the same as calling God a liar!
David’s confessed sin caused his child to die [2 Sam.12:21-23]
He was able to move on past it [Ps.51:13-15]
Paul was “chief” of sinners [1 Tim.1:12-17]
He pressed forward [Phil. 3:13-14]
Man Forgiving God
It may sound crazy for someone to be mad at God and hold a grudge against him, but it happens al the time.
We blame God for our troubles, when in reality we bring most of our problems on ourselves.
The rule of ‘sowing and reaping’, [Gal.6:7-8]
God never has need to “repent’, [Numbers 23:19]
We must always remember that God is right and we are wrong, [Neh.9:33]
Much of your life is a training ground to help you grow in grace and develop spiritually, so that with your experience you can help others while Christ gets the glory. [2 Cor.1:3-4]
Instead of getting mad and asking God “Why?”, Ask God “What can I learn from this….”
* This lesson was adapted from “Bread of Life” Bible Believer’s Fundamental Bible Study Course, volume 1 by Chaplain Ted L. Warmack, Bible Believer’s Outreach Inc.