Good Beautiful Afternoon Harvesters,
Last Sunday was a tough one. We looked at Luke 23:32-34, “Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with (Jesus) to be executed. When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.””
I asked, "Who it today that you need to forgive?" Jesus set a new standard of forgiveness for us as His disciples. He didn't tell us eye for an eye or only forgive 3 times but extended it to a number really high so that we won't keep count. Our forgiveness of others should be the same as that He gives us. It was interesting after service that one person asked me, "My Bible says 70x7, which number is it 77 or 490?" I responded which ever is higher. The point being it doesn't matter, we shouldn't be keeping track anyways.
Remember that forgiveness is not something that we just receive, it is also something that we give. Now remember, God will help us when it is time to offer that forgiveness, especially when it has been something that is deeply hurtful. Forgiveness doesn't also nullify the consequences of the sin, especially in the physical world, dealing with justice. Forgiveness is what helps us stay pliable and moving towards Christ-likeness, because the debtor can't always repay us or us them. But the offended an always show mercy.
I said Sunday that forgiveness benefits you, for forgiveness unlocks the door to the prison that unforgiveness creates and lets us escape and live free. Again, who do you need to forgive?
Looking forward to a great service tomorrow. Enjoy the rest of the day!
Harvest Community Church of the Nazarene