The Prayer of Release
Lord, Teach Us To Pray
The Prayer of Release
The Call To Forgive
This is not saying that we Earn Forgiveness by forgiving others
Experiencing God’s forgiveness transforms us into Forgiving People
Forgiving others is Evidence of us having received God’s forgiveness
What Is Forgiveness?
Forgiveness is not…
- Denying the seriousness or the pain of the offense
- The same as Reconciliation
- The same as rebuilding Trust
Choosing to release our offender from the obligation for repayment that was created by their offense and to cover the loss ourselves, entrusting ourselves to God
“When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly.” (1 Peter 2:23, ESV)
“Aphiemi” - Greek word translated forgive means “to let go” “to send off”
Why Must I Learn To Forgive?
- Because God Has Forgiven Me
When we fail to realize the awesomeness of God’s forgiveness toward us, we tend to be Unforgiving
- Because Unforgiveness Makes Me Miserable
“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.” (Matthew 5:7, ESV)
Resentment always hurts you more than the other person!
Forgiveness is not a feeling – Forgiveness is a Choice
“To forgive someone means to let him off the hook, or to cancel a debt he owes you. When you refuse to forgive someone, you still want something from that person, and even if it is revenge you want, it keeps you tied to him forever.” Henry Cloud
Forgiveness sets a prisoner free only to discover that the prisoner was me
- Because I’m Going To Need Forgiveness Again
Thinking About Forgiveness
- Forgiveness has to do with the Past
Forgiveness is not holding something someone has done against him or her. It is letting it go. It only takes one to offer forgiveness. And just as God has offered forgiveness to everyone, we are expected to do the same. It is refusing to seek vengeance and leaving that with God. (see Matthew 18:35 & Romans 12:19-21).
- Reconciliation has to do with the Present
It occurs when the other person apologizes and accepts forgiveness. It takes two to reconcile.
- Trust has to do with the Future
It deals with both what you will risk happening again and what you will open yourself up to. A person must show through his actions that he is trustworthy before you trust him again (see Matthew 3:8).
Three Aspects Of Forgiveness
- Upward:Embracing divine forgiveness
- Inward:Granting inward forgiveness
- Outward:Forging a reconciled relationship
Moving Forward With Forgiveness
- Acknowledge the debt and the hurt
- Grieve it
- Release it to God
- Process the pain
- Move forward appropriately
- Recognize that it is a journey that may require time and outside resources
Forgiveness is one more Gift from our gracious God that allows us to be able to function in relationships with real people in the real world.
Two Inner Resources The Gospel Gives To Us To Enable Us To Forgive One Another
- Realistic Humility about our own sin
- Joyful Assurance of our own acceptance in Christ
“The debts he forgives are infinite, whereas the ones we forgive are relatively small, even if they do not always seem that way to us. There also seems to be something significant about the fact that God forgives our debts, while we forgive our debtors. The most that we can do is pardon the sinner, not the sin. Only God can clear the actual charges of sin because he alone is the Judge of the universe.” Philip Ryken
Making It Personal:
- How will I make spending time in prayer a priority for my life in this New Year?
- What new perspective did I gain about what it means to forgive others from today’s teaching?
- How can I apply today’s teaching to my personal prayer life?
- Focus on prayer as we begin a New Year by working through the book, “21 Days of Breakthrough Prayer”.
- Who can I share these truths with?
Ready to take your Next Step?
- Text Next to 803-637-8484
- Go to FBCFM.COM and click “Next Steps”
other sermons in this series