Forgive your enemies and love those who persecute you

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by JohnC, Jun 12, 2015.

  1. Matt 5:44 Luke 6:28
    We are to forgive those who sin against us...
    Love those who spitefully use us....
    Pray for the repentance of our enemies.....

    How far do those commands extend?

    For example - when Jesus declares in Luke 6:35 ".... For He is kind to the unthankful and evil" - who is Jesus speaking about The Father being kind to? Only men....

    Can you bring yourself to forgive Satan for the abuse and pain he has caused you and those whom you love? Can you forgive the one who has heaped more suffering upon us than any being in the universe?

    Can you Love the one who has spitefully used and abused us more than any other? Can you love the one who has worn us out and spitefully destroyed us more than any being in the entire universe?

    Can you offer up prayer and supplication for one who is undoubtably our enemy - even so far as asking God to grant him true repentance... Can you pray for this one who stands as our adversary before the throne of God - accusing and slandering us before The Throne? Begging God for the right to sift us as chaff from the wheat...

    Can you bring yourself to do these things - even if only to "Leave room for the wrath of God" Romans 12:19

    Yes - I know that this is a little out there (Or maybe a lot out there)... but it's something I have been thinking about.... and I have to say I am more than a bit uncomfortable when I think about it..... BUT - I also understand that filling up my heart with hate, malice, and fear is ALSO not what God wants either....
  2. We are not called or required to extend this kind of forgiveness or mercy towards Satan and his demons. They are 100% God's enemies, they will not an cannot repent, their future is set. We are called to forgive and have mercy on all humans though , no matter how evil they may be, this is because there is a chance for them to repent and be saved, we don't know their future.
    Lanolin, Arrie03, Fish Catcher Jim and 3 others say Amen and like this.
  3. We are to forgive those who ask forgiveness. We are not called to forgive satan.

    God doesn't forgive until they ask for forgiveness. Otherwise everybody would go to heaven. And when we forgive people when they ask for forgiveness, we do not forget what they did. We let go of the pain, but there are always consequences to our actions, sometimes forgiveness includes consequences.
    Silk and Juk say Amen and like this.
  4. I would disagree here. We need to forgive regardless of whether they have asked for that forgiveness. Our Lord prayed to the Father for forgiveness of those that nailed Him to the cross. Forgiveness edifies us regardless of whether the other person changes.

    And, if we 'forgive' but do not forget, I would examine the heart and see if there was truly forgiveness. Having someone "suffer the consequences of their actions" is not a part of forgiveness. Any spiritual consequences are between the Lord, who may find a teachable moment here, and the person, but our forgiveness of that person should not be connected to any retribution.

    If you just meant that if someone has failed you that you may not depend upon them in the same way in the future, that is likely to be a separate issue than forgiveness, since you may be protecting something else of interest to the Lord. That still does not preclude forgiving the person.

    As far as forgiving the enemy, I would point out that there are three sources of temptation to do wrong (and thus provide impetus for doing things that need forgiveness):
    the flesh (the selfish desires of each of us individually),
    the world (the society of us as a whole)
    the devil (the enemy)

    Two of the three are ourselves, though the enemy uses those two to achieve his ends. I think that most offences that we need concern ourselves with forgiving comes from man, either as individuals, or as someone lets society steer them.
    Arrie03 and Fish Catcher Jim say Amen and like this.
  5. Good points to ponder on, With the forgivness of the Father to those that nailed Him to the cross, forgiveness was shown that the Lords wrath was not poured out onto them who directly crucified Jesus, However, they were not Forgiven in terms that they were saved (unless they later repented and came to the Lord)

    When we forget, we are to forget the pain that they caused us, but we still must take into consideration of what they did. I can forgive a mechanic for messing up my alignment, but I'm not going to forget that he did it and I probably won't go to him again.

    Also, consequences are a part of everything, and are a part of the healing process. The Lord forgives us of our sins, but sins still have consequences that linger even after people are saved. They are still forgiven, but the damage still can be lingering.
  6. So, if someone strikes you, you need to prevent them from striking you again...? Let's see what our Lord had to say:

    Matt 5:38-42
    You have heard that it was said, 'AN EYE FOR AN EYE, AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH.' "But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. "If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also. "Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two. "Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you.

    Matt 18:21-22
    Then Peter came and said to Him, "Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?"Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven".

    This is not ( only ) for the sake of the person you are forgiving. It is to edify your heart and focus your thoughts on the Lord, not on the wrong you suffered.

    Consequences may be part of the other person's walk with (or without) the Lord, but you are not exalted or defiled by those consequences. If you think YOU are to provide the consequences for someone else's wrongdoing, I don't think that would be the general case. It would drive you to be judgmental, finding wrongs where none exists. It would definitely get in the way of forgiving, since you would be too busy thinking up appropriate retribution.

    In your example, this does not mean that you must keep taking your car to the same mechanic, but taking the car to a more competent mechanic is less a matter of punishing the bad mechanic than it is taking proper care of your car.
  7. It sure seems like you are splitting hairs here. The bad mechanic is indeed paying the consequences of being a bad mechanic by losing business. Retribution is vengeance, and that is indeed wrong, and not the same thing. If my child does something wrong, I will certainly forgive him for it, but he may still have to pay consequences (such as being grounded by me) for what he did. That is not retribution/vengeance. Or let's say that my daughter's boyfriend inappropriately touches her. I will forgive him, but I will also forbid him from seeing her again. That is the consequence he has to pay for his actions, not retribution.
  8. Brother Klub this is not totally correct. We are to forgive point blank. Nothing in His word says only when they ask. How many times does an enemy text you and say hey man like forgive me ?

    There is only one reason a person does not spend etenity with the Father in Heaven and that is NOT EVER making Jesus lord of their life. NO blood covering no eternity with the Father.

    We do need to forget what was done - to the point where it can not fester up again and again and again. Yes there can be consequences for every action brings a reaction but this has no play on forgetting or forgiving. When God forgive us He remembers our sins no more.

    Blessings Klub
    Arrie03, Cturtle, Mykuhl and 1 other person say Amen and like this.
  9. It may be splitting hairs, but sometimes it is important to split those hairs.

    In the case of teaching your child, it is your responsibility to train him. That entails making him see that what he does has consequences. The desire is that he will understand the principle and do what is right when only the Lord is watching. This is not a matter of forgiveness so much as mentor-ship. Presumably, he will also have lessons that teach the value of forgiveness. Your responsibility.

    In the case of your daughter, you are protecting your family, not punishing the boyfriend. Your responsibility.

    In the case of the mechanic, it is not your responsibility to train him, either in his profession, or morally.

    In none of these cases is forgiveness really the issue. In the case of your child, it is in molding a person who will be a joyful servant of the Lord.

    In the case of the mechanic, your concern should be more for finding a good mechanic for your car. He is not your responsibility.
  10. And Stephan did the same just before dying at the hands of fellow jews. They did not ask forgiveness, yet he pleaded for forgiveness for them.
  11. Exactly my point! And that doesn't just apply to children. Are you trying to argue here that there are not consequences to our actions when we sin??

    In regard to forgiveness, you stated - "In none of these cases is forgiveness really the issue." Not true. If my daughter's boyfriend did something inappropriate to her, I am still required to forgive him. I can't harbor hate toward him, if I am following Jesus word.
  12. There is a difference between forgiveness and letting go.
    Robine likes this.
  13. The consequences of our sin for ourselves is an issue, but our forgiveness of the sin of others is to be a function of OUR relationship to the Lord, not a function of their earning it or getting their 'comeuppance'.

    If you are just considering whether you let your daughter and her young man keep company, making decisions regarding your daughter's welfare may well be affected by whether you feel he has learned how to act correctly, but you may truly forgive him and still feel he does not have self control and decide not to let them be alone together. You are then helping them behave within bounds until he demonstrates the maturity required. On the other hand, you may still harbor resentment to the young man, recognize your own failing and not let that color your judgement either way. So, it still should not be a matter of your forgiveness of him, but of prudence.
  14. I never said that it was. Not sure where you're getting that from. Forgiveness of someone should be unconditional, and does not have to be asked for or earned in any way, shape or form.
    I will not agree to that. It is always about forgiveness.
  15. So, if I may ask, if someone laid hands on your daughter, and you understand and forgive and harbor no ill will towards the young man, but you believe that he will be unable to control his urges, if you then try to protect your daughter from further harm, does that mean that you really haven't forgiven him for what he did before?

    Do you have to demonstrate your forgiveness by trusting the Lord that the young man will controlled himself in the future?
  16. Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself, so that you will not harbor hatred or vengeance in your heart, and can continue your journey back to God. We are not in a position to forgive Satan - only God can do that.
  17. God can not and will not ever forgive satan. The devil has no tempter and once he rebelled against God he was done and cursed and doomed forever. End of story
  18. Yes there is and we are to do both.
  19. Amen and You DONT have to allow him another chance to do it again even though you forgive him. God said forgive the theif HOWEVER He did not say give the key to your house to a theif. Forgive your brother for getting drunk on the week ends.......that is good but you still dont need to give him your car keys.
    Mykuhl likes this.
  20. No. Forgiveness does not equal freedom from consequences.

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