HOW MANY TIMES MUST I FORGIVE
SOMEONE WHO DOE NOT DESERVE FORGIVENESS?
Sometimes we ask this question because we feel so deeply hurt and then we feel a tug at our heart and decide : "Okay, I will forgive... but not forget". My friend, that is not forgiveness. FORGIVENESS LIKE JESUS IS UNCONDITIONAL FORGIVENESS.... unconditional love! And forgiveness is FOR THE UNDESERVING.
21Then Peter came to Him and said, "Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?"
Peter asked the Lord how often he should forgive his brother. The Lord's answer to him was simple: Up to 70 times seven times. (Matthew 18:22) In other words, all the time!
Argument: "Well, he does not deserve my forgiveness."
Substantiating answer: "Neither did you deserve God's forgiveness".
There is not a single person alive or dead who did not break all 10 of God's commandments. There is no such thing as a "partial sinner" or "great sinner". All of us were great sinners when Jesus saved us. And when we realize that we are forgiven much, we will love much. (Luke 7:47)
Question: "How on earth can you say that I have broken all of God's commandments? I have never committed adultery."
My friend, Jesus said, "If you lust after a woman in your heart, you have already committed adultery with her." (Matthew 5:28) That is God's standard. Man looks outward, but God looks inward at the heart. Moreover, if you break one law, you are guilty of all. (James 2:10) So everyone has broken all of God's commandments. Everyone is a great sinner.
I think there is not ONE of us (even how devout we may be and how deep our love is for Jesus) that has not transgressed. And, to me, that is the amazing thing about GOD'S GRACE. We, ordinary human beings, cannot grasp that concept. We must learn to accept and love the UNLOVEABLE'S (smile) - I think this is one of my own expressions... I did not check to see if it exists in the Dictionary... But this is the point that I am trying to make.
Now, you are no longer a sinner if you have received Christ as your Savior. You are a new creation. But you were a great sinner and God forgave you your huge debt through the death of His Son.
So if someone has wronged you, tell yourself this: "I did not deserve God's forgiveness, but He forgave me through Christ. So I forgive this person also." If you say something like, "He does not deserve it," it makes no sense. Forgiveness is not for people who deserve it. If they deserve anything, it is punishment. Both you and I deserve punishment!!! But forgiveness means that you extend grace — undeserved favor — like that which God extends to you.
I suggest that one forgives or pardons the transgressor "graciously"....
The dictionary defines this as follows:
1. kind and polite: full of tact, kindness, and politeness a gracious refusal
2. condescendingly polite: condescendingly indulgent and generous to perceived inferiors
3. elegant: luxurious and elegant gracious living
AND POINT NO. 4 IS THE ONE I AM REFERRING TO:
4. having divine grace: displaying divine grace, mercy, or compassion
Dear friend, if you choose to hold on to bitterness, no one suffers but you. You lose your peace, then possibly your health. It is just not worth it. God says to you, "Let go. Forgive them their debts, just as I have forgiven you yours."
And I think I am going to end on this beautiful note and to all who have to resolve a problem with someone who has been "unkind" to you, turn the other cheek... and return their anger and insults with "gracious kindness and love" as Jesus has asked us to...
Fondest love in our Savior, Jesus Christ