Forgiveness as a gift of Divine Grace

Canada
April 11, 2016 7:27pm CST
So I got some questions on my one post about forgiveness, and to Allen0187 I gave a reply concerning his question about what I would tell people in certain circumstances-and though I gave a response, I wanted to treat it more fully in another post. My post on that was primarily about myself coming past things and forgiving those who had wronged me...and how concepts of love etc. are part of Christian orthodoxy...I hadn't written it in mind of others, because my posts sometimes well, I am talking to myself as much as anyone...I am reminding myself of things I need to do...but the questions raised, were very good. So what I would tell others who are struggling with the concept of forgiving those who wronged them... I said in it that to those struggling I would give an ear and dialogue, and that I would not demand someone who had gone through a traumatic experience that they be inflicted with a guilt where somehow they were transformed into the aggressor or wrongdoer...that is madness and in reality is simply attacking a victum further-that is diabolical. That is to say, people have gone through serious harm, and at times have had clergy or other Christians *demand* that they forgive others right away and if they don't then they are not a Christian or are living in sin-they will be quoting Jesus' words yes, but in another sense, are also twisting it to a kind of legalistic manner...um, Jesus was defending the victum and His words must not be interpreted here to become a sword...or else we transform the Saviour into...well, something else. The element which Jesus was talking about was on a condition of the heart on those who were hard hearted, vindictive, and self righteous in their eyes opposed to those "other sinners"-and that must be remembered...or else, we are twisting the Gospel of Grace into again a works based conception where we establish our own perfection...or even demanding that others be perfect when we ourselves are not. And examining the entire concept, when we are speaking of the ability to forgive others who have wronged us, or anything else within the Christian life, we are talking about a Divine Grace and Divine empowerment as a result of Divine restoration. That is, according to the New Testament, it is God who empowers us to obey Him, it is God in us through the gift of the Holy Spirit who enables us to live the Christian life-and part of that is the ability to forgive others as well. I would say if someone had gone through something difficult, traumatic, go to God with your cares, and yes, even feelings of anger or hurt...because if we are talking about healing to our nature, by definition, this is part of that as well. Those who demand perfection of us...or of others, the the truth is, on our own, the Bible says we can't be perfect on our own, the ability to keep His command is based on His action in us...as St. Paul says, "not I, but Christ in me." Anything Paul says in a letter such as Galatians, or Romans, or anywhere else about obeying the Law and the weakness of the flesh, as contrasted with the Gift of the Spirit, must also be remembered that this is part of that as well, since Paul talked about these very things in those letters as well. How can we forgive? Well, how can we do anything in the Christian life? On our own in a wounded state? Does God even expect that of us? Do we expect others, anyone, or ourselves to establish our own righteousness on our own practice? I've sat with people who had undergone trauma...just today I had to do that and my heart breaks every time for them...I would not villify a victum when the truth is... We were never intended to do that on our own, just like Salvation being the work of God, so the ability to live the Life is an extension of His Grace. Christ the Saviour-Christ the Healer-Christ the God who what He requires of us also works within us that which He requires.
21 people like this
22 responses
@just4him (109872)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
12 Apr 16
This is a message more people need to read and heed. We can't do anything alone. Christ in me is the only way.
10 people like this
@just4him (109872)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
3 May 16
1 person likes this
• United States
3 May 16
@just4him What are your thoughts on what I wrote, just curious!
1 person likes this
@just4him (109872)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
3 May 16
@Butchcass4 It's hard to add to something that was well said. I totally agree with you.
1 person likes this
@Tampa_girl7 (24889)
• United States
12 Apr 16
If we really have the desire to forgive I do believe that God will soften our hearts and grant us with forgiveness.
9 people like this
• United States
15 Apr 16
@Tampa_girl7 I believe as you do. forgiveness is a gift from God for sure. He assists us in the process as there are cases where it is terribly difficult depending on the circumstances but not impossible as with God all things are possible. To those of you who are hurting I pray for peace and that God would heal your hearts and hurts in Jesus' name Amen
1 person likes this
@Lucky15 (33429)
• Philippines
12 Apr 16
I was asked before...how can i just be easy to forgive? forgiving is more like my obligation to myself, i get tired of keeping burdens, it is not the.person who did something that i forgive, it is more of myself. And through His guidance
5 people like this
@Ruby3881 (2012)
• Canada
13 Apr 16
I think that's exactly the purpose of forgiveness: to unburden oneself at the very least, and the other if this is possible.
2 people like this
@jaboUK (53407)
• United Kingdom
12 Apr 16
I don't normally comment on religious posts, but I will just say that you don't have to follow any religious code to practice forgiveness and compassion.
3 people like this
@Ruby3881 (2012)
• Canada
13 Apr 16
Amen to that, Janet
2 people like this
@jaboUK (53407)
• United Kingdom
13 Apr 16
@Ruby3881 I'm so glad that you agree Kyla, thank you.
2 people like this
@salonga (27996)
• Philippines
12 Apr 16
It is not easy to forgive, but those who have found salvation in Christ should understand that learning to forgive is an is an essential part of Christian life because God commanded this. Were were told in Ephesians 4:32 commands to be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. So, we have to forgive because God has forgiven. But indeed it is so hard to forgive especially if we have been deeply hurt. However, if we ask God to give us the grace to forgive others, He will surely grant this to us. On our own we can't do but the Holy Spirit of God will always help us to be forgiving.
3 people like this
@TRBRocks420 (73769)
• Banks, Oregon
12 Apr 16
Amen Jesus is the only way we can do anything. I forgive everyone, but I don't forget and, I don't dine with evil.
3 people like this
@dodoazo (17329)
• Philippines
12 Apr 16
In forgiving others, we should do as Jesus taught us; that is, to forgive and forget. Or else we don't our salvation would be in peril as what the scripture clearly says. We should forgive others who sinned against us, as Christ has forgiven us of our sin.
2 people like this
@mammots (3282)
• Philippines
13 Apr 16
How do you forgive someone who continues to dig into the wound he has inflicted I have been told several times that if Jesus can forgive why cant i?
1 person likes this
• Canada
13 Apr 16
My immediate thought would be to first care for the person who is being hurt, when someone is hurt they need healing, like if someone is in an accident we take them to the hospital and care for them. How can someone forgive the way Jesus did, by sticking close to Jesus, as He said "Come to me all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest...take my yoke upon you and learn from me..."...in John's Gospel He uses the analogy of a vine and branches, and saying in union with Him and Him supplying our life's force...but first, as a priest, I would be caring for the one who is hurt...I would pray for them and with them as well as give them my ears...the answer is going to be something more then words, but a process...I try to be a presense for people in that process...if that makes sense?
1 person likes this
@mammots (3282)
• Philippines
13 Apr 16
@HebrewGreekStudies Some find it very easy and convenient to judge and condemn a person who cant find it in her-his heart to forgive. Healing for a person who has been severely hurt takes some time and not all priests have the time and the energy to do it.
1 person likes this
• Canada
13 Apr 16
@mammots agreed, that is why I try and do the opposite...I'm not willing to condemn someone who has been wounded-in my opinion it is sick, and completely contrary to the teaching of Christ.
1 person likes this
@maxen07 (889)
• Philippines
14 Apr 16
I've much to atone for in my life and have taken steps into asking God for forgiveness by means of fasting and making up my own prayers, writing them in my journal then reading them aloud in my room whenever I feel emotional to calm myself. I have wronged people and others wronged me also and so I'm asking Him for forgiveness as I have already forgiven those who wronged me. I wrote as a part of my prayer, "I don't know if there is a limit to how long before I am completely forgiven for my sins but if I need to curry Your favor in eternity, I will do what You ask of me but please never leave my side." It sounds desperate but I am deeply troubled for what I have done in the past is catching up to me and I'm alone in this because my family could never know. I have a lot to work on spiritually, mentally and physically but there comes a point when a person needs to set things straight in his or her life, especially me as a mother who has a son depending on her.
1 person likes this
• Canada
14 Apr 16
In your one post you mentioned going to Mass, have you ever gone to Confession and gotten guidance from your priest re. this, or been given Absolution? To me it sounds like you've already sought forgiveness from God, in which case the Eucharist is a symbol of that forgiveness as we say "Take and eat this with faith"-with the Eucharist, we believe that God has provided Atonement long ago, and Jesus said "Whoever comes to me I will by no means cast aside"-the Gospel of Christ is God's forgiveness offered to us, and infact God inviting us into that-the next time you go to Mass and hear those words, take them as promise of His Grace, because that is why they are said:).
@Butchcass4 (6015)
• United States
14 Apr 16
Awesome article! I love Philippians 2:13 God is working in us to help us want to do and to be able to do what pleases Him. And Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Forgiveness can be a journey for many as it has been for me. God does a healing within the depths of our soul and heart and enables us once He's healed us, to forgive.
1 person likes this
@mom210 (6518)
• Atlanta, Georgia
13 Apr 16
It is so hard to forgive, but when we ask for help, Our Lord gives it
1 person likes this
@MandaLee (3691)
• United States
13 Apr 16
Christ gives us grace to forgive, as He graciously forgave us. Only through Him can we do or be anything.
1 person likes this
@Dena91 (4178)
• United States
13 Apr 16
It took me a long time to forgive my parents who had been abusive towards my brother and I while growing up. God began dealing with my heart on it and I began to let Him help me with it. I am thankful I listened because my Dad became a Christian and our relationship was healed. I would have missed the blessing of the last 7 years of his life. I miss him dearly but so thankful for learning to let God help me on forgiveness. This was a great post. Thanks for sharing it with us. Have a blessed evening.
1 person likes this
@Drosophila (16735)
• Ireland
12 Apr 16
A very intricate post! I love it! I have real trouble forgiving, and when I do. I do so completely and I also forget too. It can take several years, but it does happen :)
1 person likes this
@bluesa (13430)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
12 Apr 16
@HebrewGreekStudies , well said. If someone hurts someone really badly, it will take time and a lot of prayer to forgive, it is not instantaneous. And it is only with the Lords help.
1 person likes this
@1hopefulman (26067)
• Canada
12 Apr 16
Good post! While we are commanded to forgive, in some situations, it may take some time for a person to be able to do so. A more serious wound, will take more time to heal. God is patient and compassionate and we also need to be. We do not need to push or rush anyone.
1 person likes this
@sugartoes (39261)
• Greencastle, Indiana
12 Apr 16
I really liked your story here it's not easy to forgive those that has stabbed you in the back & expect you to just act like they didn't do anything wrong to you & walk away yes gods SAYS to forgive those that have done you wrong as he has forgave us for all our sins that's true, BUT sometimes it's hard to just walk away without the pain in your heart that keeps it alive to live with.
1 person likes this
@Inlemay (16484)
• South Africa
12 Apr 16
I love that you sum it up with something as simple as "to live the Life is an extension of His Grace" Amen to that
1 person likes this
• Japan
12 Apr 16
Excellent theology and advice. Thank you.
1 person likes this
@allen0187 (32597)
• Philippines
12 Apr 16
Thanks for another insightful post. It is much appreciated. Let me just say that after what happened to me, I've tried my best to find it in my heart to forgive but I have not seen remorsefulness from those who wronged me. In fact, I continue to see the opposite, people justifying what they did and putting the blame on me. No one has apologized. Not sure if that time will come so until then I've embraced the mantra 'Never forgive. Never forget.'
1 person likes this