July 26, 2016

Power in Forgiveness

A secular-leaning friend recently said, “I think forgiveness is a form of power.” I’m still digesting the thought. When I think of the character of forgiveness, the words humble, compassion, grace, and obedience come to mind. The idea that forgiveness has the attribute of power has never crossed my mind. If anything, and I’m not sure why, I sense weakness in forgiveness. I suppose forgiveness might come naturally to some folks and they could experience a sense of power…then there’s the rest of us who must keep going back to Forgiveness 101. Jesus said, “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matt 6:14-15 NIV).

1 comment:

Steve Corey said...


-----Jesus said to first seek the kingdom of heaven, then His Father would add the stuff we need. If the kingdom of heaven were a place, we would seek it by the use of a map. But it is not. It is a condition, a situation, a relationship, and as such, it is not reached by spatial orientation, but by being. Therefore seeking the kingdom of heaven is a matter of becoming its condition, developing its situation, and building its relationships.
-----I am somewhat ashamed to say that the left-wing ideology on “power” has helped me understand what exactly is power. Before I encountered their thinking, my concept of power envisioned the butt of a 30-06 against my shoulder, a pistol grip in my hand, or the levers of a backhoe or bulldozer at my beck and call, a Boss 429 Mustang, or John Elway’s right arm a quarter-century ago. But power is so much more than that.
-----Power is the ability to drop to a knee and look a child in the eyes with warmth and compassion and actually lead his desire from taking a toy to giving it. Power is sway over hearts and minds. Of course, being in this world, sway over hearts and minds can be good, or it can be very bad. But it is power.
-----Forgiveness is power. Although a 30-06 can stop a Grizzly, it isn’t going to help you with the school of piranha. Neither will forgiveness. It isn’t that kind of power. Nor will it get your body past the rabidly, crazed Islamic radical. But the maximum power of forgiveness will get your eternal soul past the place where the radical will spend eternity. It won’t do this in itself, naturally. Jesus gets us past Hell. But forgiveness seems to have some sort of sway over His willingness to do so, “…if you do not forgive…your Father will not forgive…” Forgiveness has the power to be the doorway to that which we must first seek: the kingdom of heaven, because for us faulty ones, forgiveness is the kingdom’s first system and process. Your use of it has the power to validate that Christ is indeed changing your substance into that of His kingdom.

Love you all,
Steve Corey