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1 Question Do you think there is a difference between the forgiveness of God and the forgiveness of man, (even redeemed man)? Do you think there SHOULD.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Question Do you think there is a difference between the forgiveness of God and the forgiveness of man, (even redeemed man)? Do you think there SHOULD."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Question Do you think there is a difference between the forgiveness of God and the forgiveness of man, (even redeemed man)? Do you think there SHOULD BE a difference?

2 2 This Week I. Examine the differences and similarities between Divine and human forgiveness II. Review the teaching of Christ with regard to forgiveness III. Examine our own hearts with regard to the forgiveness that we offer to those who offend us Lesson Plan

3 3 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness a. There are many similarities between human and Divine forgiveness. In other words, at least in theory what is true about one is clearly implied by the other. Matt 6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. KJV b. The differences we find between human and Divine forgiveness are not due to the essence or structure of forgiveness itself, rather, they emerge from the differences in character between the Divine forgiver and the human one.

4 4 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness c. It is in the nature of God to be long-suffering, kind, loving, forgiving, tenderhearted, etc. and to seek reconciliation where alienation has occurred, even if that alienation can only be bridged by his own provision. 1 Peter 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. KJV

5 5 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness d. Unfortunately, what one finds flowing abundantly from the nature of God does not flow with equal abundance from the nature of man. Consequently, even though a man may be forgiven, he may not so easily forgive.

6 6 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness e. While God retains a judicial right to judge offenses, to prescribe their punishment and to make possible forgiveness and reconciliation, it is often man acting in the place of God who takes it upon himself to dispense judgment and justice when he is offended.

7 7 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness f. This is an area of major difference between the Divine and the human. God as Creator is owed absolute obedience; sinning against God is heinous and without excuse, and deserves instant, and everlasting damnation. His judgment is just. Ps 94:1 O Lord God, to whom vengeance belongeth; KJV

8 8 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness g. The God who created us, who sustains us, who gives us life and breath and every other thing, has never done anything to us which would warrant or justify our sin against him. h. Offenses against God can never be considered trite. Man, on the other hand, often takes offense at trivial things. For instance, we are offended by injuries to our feelings or self-concept. James 1:19- 20 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. KJV

9 9 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness i. Scripture plainly reveals that being a recipient of Gods forgiveness is conditional upon man's forgiveness of the wrongs done him. Matt 6:15 But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. NIV j.However, when we are called upon to forgive our offenders we often overlook the fact that we are guilty of the same thing that has been done to us. Rom 2:2 You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. NIV

10 10 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness k. When we struggle to forgive others it is often because we have a disposition of heart which fails to see ourselves as having offended God continuously and deeply. l. This condition can only exist within one who is insensitive to the degree and amount of his own personal guilt, credited to his own account as a sinner before God. Col 3:13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. KJV

11 11 I. Divine VS Human Forgiveness m. To comprehend the vast significance of God's forgiveness is to comprehend the unbridgeable chasm between one's sinful heart and the just and righteous God who seeks reconciliation with us. Luke 5:8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. KJV

12 12 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness a. Repentance is a necessary ingredient of real forgiveness. There should be no essential difference between the human and the Divine pardon, though God's forgiveness is necessarily more complete. b. His forgiveness results in the complete removal of all estrangement and alienation between the parties. It restores completely the relationship which existed prior to the sin. Ps 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

13 13 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness c. The total removal of the sin as a result of the Divine forgiveness is granted and guaranteed to the repentant one. Isa 38:17 "Thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back"; "Thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea" Jer 31:34 "I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin will I remember no more" d. Ideally this same result should be attained in human forgiveness as well, but in actuality in human forgiveness the memory of the offense remains with both parties and often creates a relational barrier between them.

14 14 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness e. In human forgiveness, even when there is a complete restoration of fellowship the former state of alienation cannot entirely be removed from one's memory. f. In human forgiveness there is often a scar that blocks the removal from the mind the consciousness awareness of sin and the guilt which that involved, and as a result, there is no removal of the mistrust which was the ground of the alienation.

15 15 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness g. When God forgives, however, He restores man to the condition of former favor. His release from punishment is remitted and Divine justice is completely satisfied. Isa 53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. KJV

16 16 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness h. In the Biblical narrative we often see that the consequences are not removed, but in Divine forgiveness they lose all penal character and become disciplinary. 2 Sam 12:13-14 And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord. And Nathan said unto David, The Lord also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die. KJV

17 17 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness i. Penal character is as an act of justice, revealing wrath, where there is guilt there is punishment, but where guilt has been removed, there can be no punishment and there is mercy. Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; KJV j. For those who are in Christ Jesus, there is no condemnation, or punishment, these receive only chastisement or training to further the cause of sanctification and ultimate glorification. Heb 12:11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. KJV

18 18 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness k. In the forgiveness of God, mistrust is changed into trust, and this produces peace of mind Ps 32:1,5-7. Blessed is the man whose trans-question is forgiven; I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto him. Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah.KJV

19 19 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness l. God's forgiveness also introduces a consciousness of the Divine love and mercy. Ps 103:1-4 Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; KJV m. God's forgiveness also removes fear of punishment. Rom 8:15-17 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. KJV

20 20 II. Divine & Human Forgiveness n. God's forgiveness also awakens the recipient to love God fervently. Luke 7:37-38 And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. KJV

21 21 III. Teachings of Christ a. Jesus summing-up the attitudes of Jews of his day and their understanding of the teaching of the Scriptures revealed to them a completely different approach for dealing with offenses and the offender. Matt 5:43 "Ye have heard that it was said.... hate thine enemy" b. Christ taught that forgiveness is a duty. No limit can be set to the extent of forgiveness and it must be granted without holding anything back. Luke 17:4 And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him. KJV

22 22 III. Teachings of Christ c. To Jesus there was never any wrong so gross nor so often repeated that it is beyond forgiveness. To Him an unforgiving spirit is one of the most heinous of sins and truly reflected an ungrateful and implacable spirit. Matt 18:32-33 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? KJV

23 23 III. Teachings of Christ d. This natural, pagan spirit of implacability Jesus sought to replace with a generous, loving, forgiving spirit because in the spirit of Christ into which we have been born again, we do not keep a record of wrongs. 1 Cor 13:4-7 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. NIV

24 a. Do you have people who have wronged you that you have not forgiven to the same extent that you have been forgiven? b. What keeps you from releasing their sin to God for His covering of that debt? 24 IV. Application

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