C.H. Spurgeon

Sinners, let me address you with words of life; Jesus wants nothing from you, nothing whatsoever, nothing done, nothing felt; he gives both work and feeling. Ragged, penniless, just as you are, lost, forsaken, desolate, with no good feelings, and no good hopes, still Jesus comes to you, and in these words of pity he addresses you, "Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out."

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Thursday, February 08, 2007

When Un-forgiveness Kills

“Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” - Romans 12:19

In an article [here] by the Associated Press, we are brought to the realization of what un-forgiveness can actually lead to. According to the report, a young teenage boy was in a fight with a peer. This is not all that uncommon for neither boys nor girls and even siblings as we grow up close to one another. There will be arguments and fights, but usually not to this extent in the average case. Most of the time it is a quick argument and small fight, then we are back to being friends the next day if not later that afternoon.

Apparently these young teens had moved on from the confrontation, as do most people [I would assume], but his mother [yes, the one that should be teaching him, along with one’s father, how to react properly to situations that one may go through in life] suggested, not to forgive the other teen, but police say “gave the boy a handgun after he lost a fight and told him to take revenge”.

From this we can justifiably assume one of two things: [1] This teen actually had forgiven [or at the least let go of] the other individual but his mother gave him the handgun and suggested that he [or convinced him to] take revenge upon the other individual for if nothing else the fact that her son lost the fight, or [2] this young teen did not allow the anger and frustration of the incident to leave him but rather held it and enraged it and allowed his mother to give him a way to exert that rage. Either way this teen is guilty of murder.

Scripture is very clear that we should forgive. Peter asked Christ in Matthew 28:21, 22, “Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?” and Christ replied, “I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.” It also declares in Matthew 6:14-15 “For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” We are to be “kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.” [Ephesians 4:32] For Christ said that we should “love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” [Matthew 27:37-40]

We are to forgive [1] because we are to love God, [2] because we love God we are to [a] obey His Words even we don’t really want to agree with them and [b] we should desire to be more like Him. Doesn’t the title Christian carry with it the meaning “Christ-like”? Maybe I am wrong and it means something else.

We read in Ephesians 4:26-32, “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil. Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”

These things will come forth from an unforgiving heart.

The next time someone does something to us, let us remember that God gave us grace and mercy with longsuffering without vengeance and revenge. Christ also was the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world meaning God’s desire to save sinners was before any of us ever asked God to forgive us. Although our sin is an abomination and stench before the throne of God, He did not immediately send us to hell, but sent His Spirit to convict us of sin and save our souls through the blood of His Son Jesus Christ.

We are to forgive whether someone ask for it or not. Why? Because God said so.

So the next time your child comes home from school and says, “Dad, so and so hit me”, think a minute before you say, “Well, just hit them back.”

Now, before I close, let me answer the thought, “This is an extreme case, and I would never get mad enough to kill someone.”

1 John 3:15, “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.”

You can’t love with a heart of un-forgiveness.

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John Bunyan

To be saved is to be preserved in the faith to the end. 'He that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.' (Mt. 24:13) Not that perseverance is an accident in Christianity, or a thing performed by human industry; they that are saved 'are kept by the power of God, through faith unto salvation.' (1 Pet. 1: 3-6) But perseverance is absolutely necessary to the complete saving of the soul…. He that goeth to sea with a purpose to arrive at Spain, cannot arrive there if he be drowned by the way; wherefore perseverance is absolutely necessary to the saving of the soul.