I was thinking about talking about forgiveness and as I was the line from the movie, Jerry Maguire, “Help Me Help you!” kept coming into my head. That is sort of where this title came from. In order to forgive others, I think one must learn how to forgive one’s self. And, when being forgiven, one must learn to forgive. “Help me Help you.” God has shown us mercy through His Son, who loved us so much that He gave His life in order that we may be forgiven. Nothing we do can earn forgiveness, it is God’s act of love. We don’t deserve His forgiveness, but He forgives us anyways. We just need to accept it. In the same way, those who have hurt us do not deserve forgiveness but if we remember what Jesus did on the cross, we can forgive them too.
For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
What an awesome thing it is to know that all our sins can be forgiven if we just believe in Him! If we are in God’s grace and forgiven, should we not to forgive ourselves and others?
Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
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.
This is a hard statement of Jesus. Is he saying that if we don’t forgive someone we will lose our salvation? Or that we need to forgive others before we can be saved? I don’t know the right answer, but I think that would be contrary to what scripture says. Would that not be salvation based on works then? I think that as a child of God, He has given us the Holy Spirit. And through that, he enables us to forgive. I often say that if there is no change there is no salvation. I think this is one way that we can know that we truly are saved. By loving others. Jesus said that others will know we are His disciples by loving each other.
1 John 4:7-11
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.