“ For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”
I was at a revival one time and a friend was kidding around with the preacher about being mad at him. Of course she really wasn’t. They are long time friends but his response provoked my thinking. He replied “I’m not worried about it, you know you won’t get to Heaven if you don’t forgive me.” Again, they were just playing around but what an impact that statement made on me.
Just like idolatry, unforgiveness is another deceit of the enemy. The enemy doesn’t mind when we go sit in the church pew with unforgiveness in our heart. Unforgiveness requires being obedient to the Word of God; it is a choice we make. When we don’t choose to forgive someone, we’re choosing to eat off of the devil’s plate. Declaring their transgression against us as unpardonable is in effect exalting ourselves above God and implying the Blood of Jesus wasn’t enough to cover our transgressions AND theirs. Unforgiveness is nothing but a curse straight from satan used to keep Christians powerless.
Unforgiveness is an oppression. At one point in my life I thought it was my job to avenge all of the evil ever done to me or mine. One day, after much frustration of constantly trying to “avenge myself”, I felt God put His Hand on my head, as if to push me behind Him and say to me “Donna, if you will be quiet and quit I will handle this for you”. I tell you, when the Lord tells you to “be quiet”, you pretty much hush! Once I allowed God to take the lead, He transformed my heart. He showed me how they too were oppressed by the enemy. The difference was, I had Him (the Lord) in my heart which gave me the power to forgive if I so chose; this particular person did not. All of a sudden that struck me as sad. I realized me returning evil with evil would never win them over to the Lord. God cares just as much about their soul as He does mine. I, “sister super Christian” as Joyce Meyer says was grieving the Lord just as much as this lost soul was. God wanted me to show them love and compassion just as He had showed me. Who was “I” to avenge them for their trespasses against “me”? I am God’s business and so was this lost soul. I chose to allow God to take care of ALL of His business, not just the parts I “couldn’t” handle on my own. So instead of wrestling with the devil myself and allowing him to keep me preoccupied with how to reap my revenge, I chose God….I chose to forgive. You see, the enemy knew as long as I chose to fight this battle on my own I would lose. He knew as long as there was unforgiveness in my heart, there was no room for Jesus’ love to grow. The devil knew this would stunt my Christian growth.
Jesus’ love is so much stronger than satan’s unforgiveness. Once we choose to be obedient to the Word of God and forgive we are released. We supernaturally begin to understand how satan has a stronghold on our offender as well and begin to pray for their release. We begin to pray blessings for them. Don’t allow the enemy to steal one more moment of your joy in the Lord by keeping you offended. It doesn’t matter how many times we are offended, what matters is how many times we choose forgiveness. God has given us dominion over the spirit of offense through Jesus. It is time for us to pick up our sword, the Word of God, and sever our relationship with the enemy. It is time for us to forgive. Forgive your trespasser and take the power away from the enemy. Discern the options and make a choice, choose love….choose Jesus. – Donna Warren