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Forgiving is Living
by Dwayne Harris
3/29/2011 / Devotionals
"Lord how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Till seven times? Jesus said unto him, "I say not unto thee, until seven times: but, until seventy times seven." Matthew 18:21-22
Peter asked Jesus how many times he should freely forgive those who had harmed or hurt him. Perhaps seven times? Although Jesus responded with an even greater numeric equation, he was implying that we should forgive others continually.
Imagine if God had a big chalk board up in heaven where he kept track of our failures. Every sin committed. Every lie spoken. Every failed attempt at pleasing him held against us. Even scarier; imagine reaching the allotted number of offenses and having your name permanently erased from the rolls of heaven. Wow! Now that's a scary thought.
Thankfully, the Lord's willingness to work with us goes beyond a set number of offenses. It's not based upon our ability to "grow up," "get it right," or even "shape-up." His forgiveness is un-conditionally extended towards all who will receive it.
Figures show the average person meets 3 new people daily. By the age of 62 you will have met over 67,890 different people. Now imagine keeping track of 490 offenses for each of those individuals. This would prove to be a hard task for even the most organized individual. Exactly the point being made by Christ, which is; you cannot enslave others in un-forgiveness without becoming a slave to the process yourself.
It was the penalty of sin and un-forgiveness that placed Christ upon a cross; however, the beauty of forgiveness and restoration is what raised him from the grave. To truly live, we must truly forgive.
Dwayne Harris is the founder of Fresh Outpouring Ministries. He is an emerging voice in the cause of evangelism and has been featured on Christian talk-radio, Christian television, and is a published devotional writer. For more info. visit www.freshoupouring.com.
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