Tuesday Devotional: Genesis 45

bible

Read Genesis 45

The forgiveness of Christianity should offend people. There is nothing like it and it conflicts and contradicts the world we live in. The forgiveness of Christianity is not normal and we should never understand or accept it as such. The forgiveness of Jesus is everything but normal. It is not how the world works. In fact, it is not how sinful people living in a sinful world tend to want the world to work. It is unfair. It is unjust. The forgiveness of Christianity is meant to divide. It is meant to be Holy and set apart. Do we understand this? Do we believe this? Have we experienced this? Sin strives to accentuate our lust for self-glory and self-power. Forgiveness demands that both be sacrificed daily at the foot of the cross of Jesus Christ. There is no selfish ambition in forgiveness. It is anti-self. Forgiveness is costly and painful and it always will be. It is not something we do naturally. It is in its nature totally unnatural. It is not something we work at and develop. It is something that works within us, in spite of us with all power and glory given to the spirit of Jesus working for us. Forgiveness requires not only a deep understanding of self but also an all-encompassing love and understanding for God. In order to radically forgive as Jesus commands us to we must understand that we are recipients of this forgiveness. We must understand that WE are in need of forgiveness first, not “them.” It is Jesus who loved us first and gave his life for us as a result of OUR sins first, not “theirs.” You have been forgiven. I have been forgiven. You have life not because you did well. You have life because you have been radically forgiven by the grace of God and the life and death of Jesus Christ. In order to radically forgive as Jesus commands us to we must understand that our temporary pain, while painful, is not ultimately about us at all. We live in a broken world and sin is pervasive. You WILL be hurt in this world. Jesus does not hide this reality from us. The glory of God is not revealed in avoiding sin. Sin is here. It is around us and within us. It is in your hurt that the healing of Jesus is revealed. It is in your hurt that the forgiving love and grace of Jesus is revealed. It is in your hurt that the sovereign will of the living God to not only heal our brokenness but to anoint it in order to bless others is revealed. Christian, this is not about you. This is all about Jesus and if he saved the world through forgiveness, should we not be expected to be an extension of that gift?

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