“And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.” Mark 11:25-26.
No matter the fault, forgiveness is necessary. Even the unforgiven must forgive, whether they are the offender or the offended. According to this scripture, unforgiveness breaks down relationship with God. Our forgiveness of trespasses is directly related to the forgiveness we give. When we hold someone in contempt we turn them into an idol. We all know the feeling you get when thinking of someone who has angered you, no matter how sanctified we are. When we entertain that feeling of hate or thoughts of unforgiveness, we are placing them above God. In reality, we are giving them the power to control our feelings. This is a prime example of us not being strong enough in our own will to overcome our sin nature.
A Christian would never, or should never, entertain sin. Sin is easier to spot when it is tangible – alcohol, drugs, etc., but when it is a feeling , or intangible, we often try to fake it. I’m not talking about temptation. Temptation is not a sin until we act on it. I’m talking about hatred, envying, coveting, unforgiveness, etc.; the things in our heart that we can’t physically touch. These too are sins. If I just shattered anyone’s idea of sinless perfection, I apologize. However, perhaps 1 John 1:8-10 may be of comfort, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” I have yet to find in the Bible “confess our righteousness”…sorry Grace Revolution.
So, how do we forgive? Satan throws out the bait and what do we do? Discernment is necessary, is it of God? Absolutely not. So, according to the Word of God we are to “Cast down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;” 1 Cor. 10:5. Then we are to “Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.” Luke 6:28. That sounds pretty cut and dry, huh? It is all Biblical so accordingly by doing these things, we should arrive at desired result – forgiveness, right?
What I just gave you is a method my friends. I gave you the steps to take to achieve desired goal and to overcome the sin of unforgiveness. In reality, I just put you under law. By doing these things (works), you are expecting your heart to change and forgiveness to occur. No my friend, if you are having a problem with unforgiveness or any sin for that matter, do not seek a method but seek deliverance. The problem you are having is dominion over sin nature. This does not mean there is a lack of faith, or not enough faith but that our faith is placed in that method and not in Jesus and His finished work. When we think that Jesus Christ and Him Crucified is Christianity 101 and we have “grown” in our spirituality – we are correct, we have grown…AWAY from the Vine. It is through our faith in Jesus’ finished work that the Holy Spirit gives us dominion over our sin nature. When our faith is moved to the method, our dominion over unforgiveness, covetousness, alcohol, drugs – our sin nature, is removed because our faith is misplaced.
With our faith on Jesus Christ and Him Crucified, we seek deliverance from unforgiveness. We look to God and ask Him to help us forgive. Yes, we discern and capture the thoughts of unforgiveness. Yes, we pray for our enemy. However, we do this because this is what we are suppose to do. The change of heart comes from the work of the Holy Spirit through our faith in Jesus that enables us to forgive, not from our actions. There is a popular TV evangelist who is popular for saying “Forgiveness is not a feeling, it is a choice.” We do not live by feeling . Unforgiveness is a sin that requires deliverance, not a choice my friends. Don’t allow pride to hinder you from seeking deliverance for unforgiveness. We can’t forgive them on our own or through a method, it is the change of heart that occurs through the Lord, not through our own will. – Donna Warren