Power Point Show MP3 audio
Scripture Reading: Ephesians 4:29-32
Forgive as God in Christ Forgave You
1. God’s forgiveness of our sins in Christ is the greatest act of love and grace we will ever experience, Psa. 32:1-2; Rom. 5:8-9.
a. “To send forth…lay aside, leave…remit” (Strong’s); To let go” (Thayer).
b. To bid to go away or depart, cf. Matt. 13:36.
2. Jesus commands us to forgive others, Mk. 11:25-26; Eph. 4:32.
a. He practiced forgiveness, Lk. 23:34; Acts 13:38.
b. He is our example of forgiveness, Col. 3:13.
3. But someone says, “He hasn’t asked for my forgiveness! I’m not expected to forgive.” (Where was such a request in Luke 23:34?)
4. Christ had a heart of forgiveness (ready, willing, anxious), so that when God’s conditions were met by the sinner, forgiveness was immediate.
5. Forgiveness is a great expression of love. God’s forgiveness of us will be measured against our forgiveness of others, Matt. 6:12, 14-15.
I. WHAT TO DO TO BE FORGIVEN OF SIN.
A. Sinners Must Acknowledge Sin and Repent, Lk. 15:7, 10, 17-21.
1. “You cannot change what you will not acknowledge.”
2. God: You cannot be saved if you will not acknowledge your sin:
a. To become a Christian, Acts 2:37-38, 41.
b. The Christian: Repent and pray (confess), Acts 8:22; 1 Jno. 1:9.
II. WHAT FORGIVING SOMEONE LOOKS LIKE.
-It is not pretense, not partial, not temporary, not probationary.
-It is unlimited, immediate and restorative. Lk. 17:4; Heb. 10:17-18
A. Forgiving Requires Us to Look for and Upon the Sinner with Compassion, Lk. 15:20 (4-5).
B. Forgiving Requires Us to Fully Receive the Sinner, Lk. 15:20, 22-24.
1. Because forgiveness lets go of the sin (obstacle/barrier) that harmed the relationship.
2. It rejoices over the repentance and salvation of a soul.
3. It is merciful and completely unselfish, Lk. 15:24.
III. WHAT FORGIVENESS DOES NOT LOOK LIKE, Lk. 15:25-30.
A. Forgiving Someone is not an Angry Concession, Lk. 15:25-30.
B. Forgiving Someone is not Suspicious, Dismissive and Condescending, Lk. 15:30. (Self-righteousness, Lk. 18:9, 13-14)
IV. FORGIVING IS AN ACTION OF FAITH, Lk. 17:5 (3-4).
A. Take Heed: Jesus Warns of the Difficulty of Forgiveness, 17:3.
1. Rebuke the brother who sins against us.
a. Try to convince sinner of sin (or he remains lost).
b. Easier to be hurt and to hold hatred in our heart, to gossip, to backbite or in other ways hinder that person’s success, than it is to forgive, Matt. 18:15.
2. If the sinner repents, forgive him, 17:3.
a. Tests our faith (17:5): To release the debt, to let go of the pain, the resentment, the doubt that the sinner and his sin has caused in our life.
b. How can we do this? Only by following the example of Christ, Eph. 4:31-5:2 (kindness, tenderhearted love and sacrifice); Lk. 23:43; Heb. 12:3.
3. If I do not forgive the repentant sinner then I am a stumbling block to him and I lose my soul!
a. Since God forgives repentant sinners, we must too, or we are not following the example of Jesus.
b. Example: Failure to forgive repentant fornicator would have cast him into the pit of overwhelming despair, 2 Cor. 2:6-7.
B. The Repetitive Nature of Forgiveness, 17:4.
1. Sometimes it is not the first sin that we have trouble forgiving, but we struggle with repeated sins against us.
a. Tempted to judge motives of repentance as insincere, to become bitter and withhold our forgiveness.
b. cf. God and Israel, Matt. 23:37 (“how often”); God and us.
2. We will be forgiven as we forgive others, Matt. 6:14-15.
3. We are not walking by faith when we refuse to have a heart of forgiveness and actually forgive as God in Christ forgave us, Col. 3:13; Eph. 4:31-32.
1. Forgiveness looks like how God in Christ forgave us (Eph. 4:32).
2. “And forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us.” (Luke 11:4)
By: Joe R. Price
Posted: June 6, 2018