The Message - Sermon


How many times do you have to forgive?

As many times as they ask!

How many times do you have to ask for forgiveness?

As many times as you have sinned!

It is easier to say you are forgiven but by human nature, it is hard to forget. So, is it okay to forgive and not forget? It is better than nothing! Is that how it is? There is no forgiveness if there is no sin committed it is as simple as that but it is not as easy as it sounds. Jesus lost his life for the forgiveness of sin. God’s graciousness to forgive our sin should be the pattern that we should mirror towards forgiving one25 another as God in Christ forgave us (Ephesians 4:32).

God is good and through that goodness comes Love and love brings mercy and grace. Imagine the world without love is like living with a yoke in your neck, survival of the fittest, freedom to enjoy life will be curtailed and without the presence of love it will be evil continually,  it will be the norm of the day. It is scary to imagine having the world without compassion and only passion to survive. How good it is to be loved by one true God. Love conquers all and it brings forgiveness on every walk of life.

Think about having no forgiveness and see how the world turns, it will be chaos! Little mistakes can lead to a disaster, one bad choice of words can bring people into a fight and one bad decision can compromise the world peace. If we will just imitate God that we love describes as slow to anger, abounding in love and very forgiving. What would be wrong? Love of money is evil but love to forgive is divine. Love without mercy and grace cannot produce forgiveness.

The Law of forgiveness comprises of passion for God and compassion for men. Forgiveness frees us from holding grudges or hatred, resentment, bitterness, and revenge against another person, despite anything they have done. Without forgiveness, there will be no wiping out of sin, no reconciliation with the Father, and eventually no gift of salvation. Jesus said on the cross “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing” Jesus was uncompromising in his prayer to forgive.

We should be willing and ready at any given time to extend our forgiveness to anyone who comes to us confessing his sin and repenting (Matthew 6:14–15; 18:23–35; Ephesians 4:31–32; Colossians 3:13).

Does someone deserve forgiveness even without asking? Yes! It is healthier at your end. Forgiveness is a thousand cures when you think about it.

How hard for you to carry such a load waiting for someone to ask for forgiveness, for something without certainty.  

Is it worth the wait? It could have a bad impact on you, physically and mentally. You do not even need to wait because it is not your business to care what he owes to himself. When he owes an apology to you and did not do it, it is his conscience that will testify against him.

When the offender goes to sleep with this sorry mood; what does he expect his mood would be when he wakes up? Still, feeling sorry for what he has done? The best thing to do is to finish the business on the same day. You can talk to God or talk to the person you offended. Then, have a good night’s sleep.

How does forgiveness play when the offender forgets or doesn’t even know that he owes someone an apology? Is it the same as when you owe someone a loan. Isn’t it unforgettable? Every time you see him it will remind you. Whoever has the burden should be the one to make a move.

If you are the offender then make a move ask for forgiveness and if you are offended and it bothers you not hearing an apology, then say something. Like a loan officer, if you forgot your payment he will remind you. Another way to play for this unforgiving saga is to consider your own sake, just forget that someone owes you an apology. God knows who they are and it is more pleasing to God if you will just submit to Him whatever grievances you have.

When we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). Likewise, when someone sinned against you and ask for forgiveness, you have to extend that forgiveness too without boundaries (Luke 17:3–4).

Sometimes we have to analyze if the person really knows that he offended someone maybe you are waiting for nothing because the person is not even aware that their action causes pain or maybe you are too sensitive to many little things. If the offender feels that asking for forgiveness will put him down,  then the problem is with him, and more likely it is the pride that is holding him to act righteously. If asking an apology a way of asking for more serious forgiveness, so be it! Grant it with an open heart!! An apology is an expression of regret when someone asks for an apology, he acknowledges his failures or mistakes; e.q. an apology with a simple “Ooops I’m sorry” will be fine for a lesser offense but still acceptable. It is more profound when asking for forgiveness insincere manner.

God’s great love and merciful nature made forgiveness available to all; but to be fully forgiven, true repentance needs to be confessed and with God sovereign grace it will surely be granted. (Ephesians 2:4). Forgiveness is not a description that we need to establish the incident before granting forgiveness but a prescription that we must grant without questions asked.

When Jesus was on the cross, he did not wait for the enemies that persecuted him to ask for forgiveness but instead humbly asked the Father to forgive them for they do not know what they are doing. In Luke 6:35—said to love your enemy and do good deeds and do not expect a return and you will be rewarded in doing so. Peter also said that we do not repay evil for evil and reviling for reviling. What good is it if we fought back, does it make us a greater person? Mightier than thou!

As it is written,  if we forgive we shall also be forgiven. There are many ways to forgive, one is the person may not come forward to ask for forgiveness: 2nd , you could just always forgive  without waiting for the person to come.  When you forgive and forget you may have peace of mind, better sleep and better days and the one that causes it will have more burdens. When you treat them like your own brother that needs care, guidance and discipline with goodness and humility then we already did what a Christian should do in time like this; and that is our strength, that is how we are called to minister to spiritual needs of many lost souls.

We need to exercise the power of confidence to draw people near to God. To let them learn that forgiveness comes from the love of God that we need to share to others this goodness of the Father that is in heaven. Repentance is always necessary to receive fully deserve forgiveness. Repentance is changing our attitude towards God and commits a full turn to godly living as Jesus has said, “Not at all! And you will perish, too, unless you repent of your sins and turn to God.”Luke 13:3.

Always bear in mind that after you receive forgiveness the godly thing to do is to start the spirit of unity among others.  The righteous act will never come back void. Be a normal God-fearing individual and believe that with God in you, no one can be against you. Many are called and few responded and are the ones that will carry the calling to the best of their capability without bending what was written. God will be with you on this journey.

“But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.’ ‘Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

“Do not judge and you will not be judged? Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Luke 6:35-38(NIV)

Willfully, willingly and sinning due to ignorance are sins that can be forgiven, but blasphemy to the Holy Spirit is an unforgivable sin. Matthew 12:30-32: “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. And so I tell you, any sin and blasphemy can be forgiven. But blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” Some extreme conservative groups consider blasphemy a crime against their religious order and death comes as punishment.

After we received the knowledge of the truth there will be no more sacrificial agent from heaven that is coming for redemptive work but the thought of fear of judgment and the raging fire that will overwhelm the earth.—Hebrews 10:26.  Willful sins help bring God’s judgment sooner and quicker with a blink of an eye. Sinning willingly has something to do with our free will but it does not mean we are permitted to sin and charge it to our free will card. Free will as it connotes give us freedom of choice but choose responsibly and wisely not carelessly as the Bible said to take “heed to yourself” advice to pay attention, watch out for every action we do that may harm our relationship with the Father and the Son that may grieve the Holy Spirit. Watch earnestly and pray fervently that we may be declared worthy to be spared and skip the wrath that will come to pass and stand before the Son, the faithful witness, the firstborn to rise from the dead, and will rule the earth with his Saints, the King of kings and Lord of lords. All glory to him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by shedding his blood for us—Revelation 1:5

So when the due time comes,  our sinful debt which was paid before by the Son will take its toll one last time and this time we are on our own if we ignore all the warnings before us by the Holy Spirit and did not take it seriously, we commit a blasphemy which is unforgivable. If we use our free will wisely we will let the Holy Spirit do it for us and all we need to do is obey what He wants us to do. The Spirit grieves when we ignore Him when he wants to use us for His purpose.

God’s love revealed His mercy and grace during the ancient times He directly involves Himself to humanity, and the earth continuously enjoying sinful acts that He sent His Son to redeem the world until it ended up on the cross and victoriously accomplish his mission and the Son was seated at the right-hand side of the Father and requested the Father to send the Holy Spirit and that is what we are now under the watchful love, guardianship of the Holy Spirit. Many still don’t get it that the Holy Spirit who is in charge now, day in and day out is being ignored of His work in guiding and protecting the gift of Salvation given to us by the Father that through Him we may achieve the glory of eternal life. The Free Will will not be used against us as described in Genesis 11 but it is already a part of us. We have to use our gift of free will wisely.  

Jesus our 2nd and last Adam, our brother; clearly said during his ministerial days on earth. “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). He also said that “Everything and everyone that the Father has given me will come to me, and I won’t turn any of them away.”(John 6:37-CEV). We should also consider “what Jesus really means that no one comes to the Father except through him” and connects it to his word that he will not turn away everything that the Father sent him. This word of Jesus is not in conflict at all but needs more communication with the Holy Spirit through prayer so more revelation will be handed to you.

If you ask the Father for forgiveness and the Father said you are forgiven then there is no usurpation of authority it passes through the process that the Son is part of the process of salvation. When he offered his life on the cross and in his last breath he said it is finished, then it is finished mission accomplish.

John 14:6 is probably one of the most controversial truths. If not misunderstood statements in the Bible interpreted by a self-made interpreter, self thinkers claiming it is a revealed word to them, some mislead the people by missing the point.

When Jesus spoke the words,  I am the way, the truth, and the life, Jesus did not claim to be God but maybe god “we are all gods, sons of the highest” he said.

This word of Jesus was most likely mean; I am the way that brings the gift of salvation to the world, delivered the truth of the word of Father and I am the giver of new life – Jesus is the giver of renewed life. Bread of life (new creation-regeneration-born again). There is one writer that I encounter his article that is very close to my understanding of Jesus’ word by the name of Jeff Lee-Truth Seeker like me. His explanation goes like this—“My way is the Truth and the way to life; no one goes to Father except through the way I demonstrated.”

A fool takes no pleasure in understanding a godly honest opinion by learned individual anointed by God but only listen to his own opinion. Jesus is very careful during his ministerial life, he does not want to jeopardize his mission to spread the word that the Father handed him. If he claims he is God, he will be charged with blasphemy and will end up with unfinished business.

When Paul said not to listen to other Jesus than the Jesus he preaches, it is not surprising that questions will come out all over the place and lead people to doubt what was actually said. How many Jesus ar there in the Bible that teaches about the kingdom of God? Some anti-Paul said that it is better than Paul was not born and the earth will be peaceful. Thomas Jefferson added that Paul is the first corrupter of the doctrine of Jesus Christ. This comment raised eyebrows to many believers who believe that the Bible is free from errors.

Paul said in 2 Corinthians 11:3-5 (NIV)”But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the Spirit you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough. I do not think I am in the least inferior to those “super-apostles.”

It seems during the early century of Christianity there were struggle about doctrinal views, the teaching by the Apostles of Jesus Christ; who saw Jesus, work with Jesus, followed the teachings of Jesus and the teachings of Paul who claimed that he ministered the gospel with the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. But if these things becomes a burden and in your way to your spiritual growth, ask the Holy Spirit for guidance and revelation of the truth and you will have it. Let us forgive those who wrongfully accused Paul and likewise we also have to ask forgiveness if we are the one that made it wrong.

John gives us clarity on the matter of forgiveness: “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:8-9).

Those who reject Jesus and His teachings due to ignorance and lack of knowledge must confess and accept Him in repentance receive forgiveness. Even though Jesus made this abundantly clear in Matthew 15:24; Matthew 10:6 It is all about the lost sheep of Israel— It doesn’t matter whether someone misses the way because of missing links which due to deliberate omission of parts of the Bible by some people who wants their way to control spiritual state of mind of their followers during the earlier year in biblical history.  Many versions of the Bible have been produced, churches of different denominations produced their own, and some denomination doesn’t even acknowledge some of the written words. Perversion of the Bible becomes the way to have an edge to enter a crowded market.

People are not as ignorant as before regarding their spiritual wellbeing, however. The people can turn the world upside down and still they will utter and believe God, and there is no excuse not to acknowledge His existence and definitely no excuse to live in disobedience. The apostle Paul said, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse” (Romans 1:18-20).

We can always be assured of God’s forgiveness. God can do great things; He can do impossible things possible. God has no weakness but to forgive those who submit to Him. Confession and repentance is on our end, it is all up to us if we want to be forgiven. “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:8-9).  

Our forgiveness of others is to be patterned to God’s forgiveness of us (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:13  Forgiveness has its own strength and no matter how they tried to disconnect it to psychological well being of a person, it cannot be denied its interconnection to spiritual well being which is intact. The mind is the arena of our spiritual battle and sin is one of those battles that we can easily win if we know how to fight a good fight of faith. We have to wear the armor of God to be fully equipped for a winning battle.  We need 1) faith to strengthen our position or wall of defense 2) we should free ourselves from unrighteousness— sinners against sinners have nothing to gain but sin.3) If we partake the divine nature and eternal power of God; no one can even get close to defeat us.  4) When we apply the word of God, they will flee faster than a flying arrow. 5) Our relationship with God through the Son will make us whole. You will not feel alone. The LORD himself will fight for you. Just stay calm and do not be afraid of them.  See how good it is to be loved by Him.

Psychological freedom can only be achieved when our mind is free from distraction, free from deception and temptation, lies, greed, and desires of luxurious living. With all these things cleared up, then there will be no more confusion about the whole concept of what it means to forgive. We can clearly perceive it, hear it, feel and smell the aroma of sweet victory. Our senses help build our faith in seeking God’s provision for forgiveness through the Son Jesus. God freely offers us forgiveness because He wants us not to perish. Likewise, He wants us to extend forgiveness to anyone who comes confessing and repenting. It should be our delight that we pleased God using the pattern of forgiveness he initiated.

When you confess and repented of your sin, then you can claim that you are forgiven. Even you sin over and over again you are already forgiven and you do not need to confess and repent. Forgiveness of sin through faith in Jesus Christ includes past, present and future sin. Jesus died to pay the penalty for all of our sins, and when they are forgiven it is perpetual. How true is that? Seems like the notion of once you are saved you are saved and never lost it! God is Holy and for not being holy we cannot see Him face to face.

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9)., Do we still need to confess our sins since we are already forgiven the first time we sinned? Do we need to confess every time we commit sin? Can we confess before we commit a sin? When we confess our sins to God, we acknowledge to Him that we fall short of His standard of holiness—When we vow not to sin again, we must do it or not make any promise at all.

“Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”— Proverbs 28:13. We are bound to confess once we sin to keep our relationship with him who redeemed us and our position as a justified and sanctified believer of Christ remains active.

We have to keep in mind that we have to work out for our own salvation with fear and trembling. This means that the gift of salvation is freely given inside us in a more simple or technical way to say that salvation is free installed that you do not need to work hard to get it. Faith that works alone can justify us. So working out what is on the inside of us happens by faith. All we need is faith to make it more rewarding, faith in Jesus Christ as John 3:16 made it clear.

Without the sacrificial work of Jesus believing is not bound to exist. The love of Jesus that produce forgiveness is our rest. That is why we confess our sins to God, as many as we need and receive forgiveness as many times as we ask—not to maintain our salvation, but to bring ourselves back into close fellowship with the God who loves us and already forgiven us even before we ask.

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