What is God's remedy for sin?

Since God withholds forgiveness, can we?



The Bible talks a lot about forgiveness, both God's forgiveness of sinful people and the forgiveness people should have for one another. But these are not separate topics of forgiveness that are unrelated to one another; in fact, they are essentially interconnected. Familiarity with God and the daily cleansing of our sins before God depend on our ability to forgive others (Matthew 6:12), and our forgiveness towards others should follow the example of God's forgiveness towards us (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3.13). So this question is very important.

We must make an effort to understand God's forgiveness for ourselves if we are to forgive others along the lines of God's forgiveness. Unfortunately for the past few decades the floor has been held forgiveness an association of "psychological freedom" rather than freedom from sin, and this has led to confusion about the concept of forgiveness in general.

It is correct that the forgiveness God grants us depends on repenting and admitting sin. Admitting or confessing sin involves agreeing with God about our sin, and repentance requires a change in mindset about the wrong attitude or deed and a change in behavior that demonstrates a genuine willingness to end sin. Sin will not be forgiven until confessed and repented (see 1 John 1: 9; Acts 20:21). While this seems like a difficult condition for forgiveness, it is also a great blessing and promise. Confessing sin is not an act of self-condemnation, but seeking God's remedy for sin through the forgiveness of Christ.

God's requirement that we repent and confess sins does not mean that God will not forgive us. For his part, he has done everything possible to make forgiveness easier for us. His heart is ready and does not want anyone to be lost (2 Peter 3: 9), and he has made the most extreme efforts imaginable to provide the means by which to forgive us. Because of Christ's sacrifice on the cross, God freely offers us his forgiveness.

The Bible says we should forgive others as we were forgiven (Ephesians 4:32) and love others as we are loved (John 13:34). We should also be ready and willing to forgive all who acknowledge and repent of their sins (Matthew 6: 14-15; 18: 23-35; Ephesians 4: 31-32; Colossians 3:13). This is not just an obligation, it should be our pleasure. If we are genuinely grateful for our own forgiveness, then we should not be hesitant to forgive a repentant guilty party, even if they keep doing wrong to us and admitting their guilt time and again. After all, we too sin over and over and are grateful that God forgives us if we come to Him with a truly repentant heart.

This brings us to the obvious question: whether we should forgive a person for their sin Not admits and Not repented? In order to adequately answer this question, we must use the term forgiveness to explain. First, what forgiveness is not:

Forgiveness is not the same as forbearance or forbearance. To be lenient means to patiently endure a provocation, to overlook a slip, or to maintain self-control over frustration. Forbearance causes us to weigh the sinful act or attitude with love, wisdom, and discernment and choose not to respond to it. The Bible uses different words for this quality: Wisdom, insight, long-suffering, love (See Proverbs 12:16; 19:11; 1 Peter 4: 8).

Forgiveness doesn't mean forgetting either. God does not suffer from amnesia about our sins. He remembers it very clearly; however, he does not remember to judge us for it (Romans 8: 1). King David's adultery and Abraham's lie - these sins are recorded in the Bible forever. Obviously, God has not "forgotten" them.

Forgiveness doesn't mean eliminating the consequences. Even when we have been forgiven by Christ, we may suffer the natural consequences of our sin (Proverbs 6:27) or we may experience discipline from our loving Heavenly Father (Hebrews 12: 5-6).

Forgiveness is not a feeling. It is an obligation to forgive the guilty. Feelings may or may not accompany forgiveness. Feelings of bitterness toward a person can fade over time without ever having forgiven them.

Forgiveness is not a private, unique act of a single heart. In other words, forgiveness involves at least two people. This is where admission and remorse come into play. Forgiveness is not just what happens in the heart of the injured person; it is a transaction between two people.

Forgiveness is not selfish; she is not motivated by self-interest. We do not seek to forgive anyone for ourselves or to free ourselves from stress. We forgive out of love for God, love for our neighbors, and gratitude for our own forgiveness.

Forgiveness is not an automatic restoration of trust. It is wrong to think that if an abusive spouse is forgiven today, a breakup will be broken tomorrow. The scriptures give us many reasons to distrust those who have not shown themselves to be trustworthy (see Luke 16: 10-12). Rebuilding trust can only begin with a process of reconciliation that involves true forgiveness - and of course, repentance and admission.

Equally important is that forgiveness offered and available are not the same as forgiveness given, received, and fulfilled. Here is the word forgiveness Viewed by itself, it is often used differently and more extensively than God's Word does. We tend to that attitude for forgiveness (wanting to forgive) to name “forgiveness” as well as the actual process of true forgiveness. This means, in the common mindset, that a person who is open to forgiving has already forgiven. But this broad definition of the word forgiveness bypasses the process of repentance and confession. Forgiveness offered and forgiveness received are completely different things, and it doesn't help if we use the same catchphrase for both.

If none of this is forgiveness, then what is forgiveness? We find an excellent definition of forgiveness in the book Unpacking forgiveness from Christ Brauns:

God's forgiveness: A commitment by the one true God to graciously absolve those who repent and believe so that they may be reconciled to Him, although that commitment does not eliminate all consequences.

General human forgiveness: An obligation on the injured party to graciously absolve those of moral obligations and make reconciliation, although not necessarily eliminating all of the consequences.

Biblically speaking, total forgiveness is not just something that the injured person offers; it is required that the guilty be forgiven, which leads to the reconciliation of the relationship. 1 John 1: 9 shows that the process of forgiveness is primarily to free the sinner; Forgiveness ends rejection and thus the reconciliation of the relationship. Therefore, we must be willing to forgive others - when we are unwilling to forgive, we deny others to enjoy what God has blessed us with. Modern popular psychology wrongly taught that "forgiveness" is one-sided, that reconciliation is not necessary, and that the point of one-sided forgiveness is to relieve the injured person from feelings of bitterness.

While we must not accumulate bitterness in our hearts (Hebrews 12:15) or repay evil for evil (1 Peter 3: 9), we should make sure that we follow God's guidance and do not offer forgiveness to those who do not repent. In short, we should withhold forgiveness when one does not repent and confess; at the same time, we should offer forgiveness and always have an attitude of willingness to forgive.

Stephen exemplifies the principle of forgiveness when he was stoned to death. Based on Jesus' words from the cross, Stephen prays: “Lord, do not count this sin on them!” (Acts 7:60; cf. Luke 23:34). These words show a definite one standby to forgive, but they don't show any completed transaction of forgiveness. Stephen just prayed that God would forgive his murderers. Stephen felt no bitterness; if his murderers showed repentance, he wished they would find forgiveness - what a wonderful example of love for enemies and praying for those who want us bad (Matthew 5:44).

The Bible commands counter-intuitive action to feed our enemies when they are hungry (Romans 12:20). There is nothing in the Bible about having to automatically forgive (or trust) them; however, we must love them and work to their advantage.

If "forgiveness" is given prematurely, without the premise of repentance and repentance, then the truth has not been openly dealt with on either side. If the guilty person does not acknowledge his sin, then he does not understand at all what forgiveness means. In the end, it does not help the culprit to understand the meaning of his sin if confession or repentance are circumvented. It only feigns justice and only makes the injured person even more struggling with bitterness.

Here are a few guidelines for godly forgiveness:

• Recognition of the fact of evil (Romans 12: 9)

• Leave vengeance to the Lord (Romans 12:19)

• Do not leave room for bitterness, vengeance, resentment, or retaliation

• Always be ready to forgive with your heart

• Trust in God to give you the ability to overcome evil with good, even love and feed your enemies (Romans 12: 20-219

• Remember that God has established governmental authorities and part of their God-given role is that she “is God's servant for your benefit. But if you do evil, be afraid; for she does not bear the sword in vain. She is God's servant and punishes him who does evil ”(Romans 13: 4). One reason we don't need to take vengeance on our own is because God authorized the government to do justice.

English



Back to the German homepage

Since God withholds forgiveness, can we?
Share this page: