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The Meaning of Forgiveness

Posted By Todd Farnsworth, Pastor of Men & Students On Thursday, December 20, 2018

​When you say, “I’m sorry, forgive me,” what exactly does that mean to everyone in the conversation?

The word “forgive” means to wipe the slate clean, to pardon, to cancel a debt. Forgiveness is an act of love, mercy and grace. Forgiveness is a decision to not hold something against a person, despite what they have done to you. We have all committed sin. 1 John 1:8 says, “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.” As a result, we need God’s forgiveness. If our sins are not forgiven, we will spend eternity suffering the consequences of our sins (Matthew 25:46 and John 3:36). So we need to ask ourselves, what wells do I keep returning to that I have not repented of and given to God? 

2 Peter 3:9 says, “…He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” God desires to forgive us, so He provided for our forgiveness. The only just penalty for our sin is death. The first half of Romans 6:23 declares, “For the wages of sin is death…” Eternal death is what we have earned for our sins. God, in His perfect plan, became a human being, Jesus Christ. (The reason for the season!) Jesus died on the cross, taking the penalty that we deserve, death. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” The righteousness of God! Ponder on that for a few. 

Ephesians 1:7 says, “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.” All you have to do is ask God to forgive you! John 3:16-17 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” That is what love really is. The world deserved to be condemned, but instead God sent a savior.  Now here is the thing, you can’t earn forgiveness from God. You can’t pay for your forgiveness from God. You can’t do service projects to get forgiveness from God. “Glossy surfaces reflect more than they reveal.” You can only receive it, by faith, through the grace and mercy of God. So this Christmas season stop and thank the true giver of ALL things. Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. God Bless.

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