Attribues of Our Heavenly Father #7

“For if you forgive others for their transgressions,
your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 
But if you do not forgive others,
then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.”
Matthew 6:14-15

God the Father is a forgiving God.  These verses can be a little confusing though because there is a condition on that forgiveness.  But it is because of God’s great mercy that the condition is there.  Because God sacrificed His Son to forgive me, I should be so filled up with gratitude and thankfulness that it overflows to others.  This happens when I realize the depth of my transgressions, my pride, me depravity.  I have never murdered anyone but it took the same blood to forgive my pride and arrogance and self-reliance that it takes to forgive a murderer.  It took a desperately wicked and deeply inhumane death by an innocent man to pay for my sins so that I could be God’s daughter.  My sins were deeper than my actions, they were my identity – I was born a sinner.  To completely be renewed through the blood of Christ, I too, must die to the old nature and be born again.  Part of the new nature is a forgiving spirit.  So forgiving others is an outpouring of who I am in Christ.  If I am truly forgiven, then I will innately forgive others.  It is a sign of my rebirth, not a condition put upon the old nature that can’t be met.

Forgiveness is an act of worship.  It is a volitional choice to let go of hurts and to live life victoriously.  My emotions don’t always stand in agreement with my decisions, so forgiveness is a journey of getting the emotions to line up with the decision!  It takes reminding our emotions over and over again of the truth of the choice of forgiveness and then an act of praise to God for His forgiveness and the ability to forgive.  So, you see, this is not a condition for salvation, but a statement of what a saved person will do.

So, God the Father is forgiving.  He is the epitome of forgiveness.  He demands that we forgive others because we are to be like our Heavenly Father in holiness.  He even gives us the power to forgive!


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