What Our Unforgiveness Says To God
By Bruce Hebel –
Are you aware that whether or not we forgive others is a real big deal to God? It is. If you take the time to study scripture, you’ll be hard pressed to find any subject that is more important to Father God than forgiveness. Think about it. In the Lord’s Prayer, forgiveness is the only part of the prayer that has a condition attached to it; forgive us as we forgive others. In addition, forgiveness is the only issue in the prayer that Jesus gives immediate commentary on. In Matthew 6:14-15, Jesus connected the Father’s forgiveness of us with our forgiveness of others. He repeats the connection in Mark 11:25-26.
Have you ever asked yourself why our forgiveness of others is so important to God? Believe me, He really does take it seriously when we don’t forgive. Why? The answer is found at the center of the redemption story. It basically goes like this: God created man for the purpose of enjoying Him forever. Man sinned against God, which required judgment and created a debt owed to God. Man could not pay the price required. Jesus, God’s son, came to earth for the purpose of paying man’s sin debt. When Jesus died on the cross He proclaimed, “It is finished!” thus declaring that, through the shedding of His own blood, He had paid for the sin debt of everyone in the entire world. Three days later, by raising His Son from the dead, the Father declared, “I agree. It is finished. I accept my Son’s blood as payment for the sins of the world.”
When we say, “I know God forgives them, but I can’t,” we are telling God the Father that, although we recognize that He values the blood of His Son enough to pay for the sins of the world, which includes the sins against us, we need something more than that. The blood of Jesus is enough to satisfy God but is not valuable enough to satisfy me.
Can you imagine looking at Father God and saying, “Your Son’s crowning achievement is not good enough. Jesus really didn’t finish His work because the sin against me requires a higher payment then He paid?” Really? Is there any father who would not be angered by that?
Now do you understand why unforgiveness is such a big deal to God?
AUTHOR QUOTE: The blood of Jesus covers all sins, including the ones committed against me!
“For if you forgive others their sins, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, your Father will not forgive you your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15 NET).
Today’s devotional is by Bruce Hebel, Forgiving Forward Seminar Speaker, President of ReGenerating Life Ministries, and Adjunct Professor at Carver Bible College. He is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary and has served in ministry for over 35 years.