One Faith Publications

                                             

 

  Kingdom Thoughts Newsletter

A publication of:

One Faith Publications

San Angelo, Texas


Thursday, March 07, 2002

Blessed be the name of the Lord Yahshua! Another week has come and gone and it is time for the    newsletter to go out once more. I praise the name of our Redeemer, Benefactor, Provider, Defender, Protector, and Healer who reigns forever more! Thank you Father for allowing us another week of living      in your presence and for giving us the privilege of knowing your mercy and experiencing your benevolence through the many ways in which you demonstrate to us your perfect and righteous goodness.


 

Matt 6:14, 15

For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:

 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

 

 

 

As I meditated on the subject of this week’s newsletter, I came across this passage in Scripture that left me thinking about the ramifications or far-reaching effects of not forgiving. We have all heard “I forgive, but I can’t forget” from someone at one time or another. I can tell you that I have had to face my own inability to forgive in that regard. When we first hear or understand that it is necessary to forgive, we often seek to compromise by forgiving but not forgetting. We feel as though we can protect ourselves from further injury from that person or persons if we just keep in mind how they behave and keep a certain distance from him, her, or them. I am not exaggerating in telling you that this is a very painful matter for people who have been deeply hurt.

 

It is, however, the very root of what will later become a tree of bitterness on which all manner of unclean birds (spirits) can then make their nest. These unclean birds bring with them all manner of disease, guilt, and anger. Scripture says, “Above all else, guard your heart; for it is the wellspring of life.”

 (Prov. 4:23) This is the reason we are exhorted by the Master to completely release all who have injured or wronged us from the prison of our heart. Although we fear that forgetting may put us in harms way again, we must do, as our Lord commands, in full trust that He knows what He is doing.

 

An excellent example of forgiveness would be Joseph in the Tanahk. (Old Testament)

I sincerely cannot imagine going through what Joseph did in the treatment he received from his brothers, yet, he perceived the matter with extremely wise perception. He came to understand that God had engineered the whole matter so as to save many lives, including those of the very ones who betrayed him. If Joseph had been a vengeful man, he later was certainly in a position to carry out whatever punishment he saw fit against his brothers. It was only his obedience to God’s will and his love of God’s mercy that kept him in proper balance. He did not take his eyes off of God’s purpose for his life and was therefore able to consider even the betrayal by his brothers as an integral part of the whole plan of God. There must have been times during his prison years that Joseph asked our Father, “why?” I don’t think we ought to make Joseph superhuman and pretend that he did not have questions. The important part is that he trusted God in the face of such adversity, that he became the instrument that God used to save not only Israel from starvation, but also the very nation from which He would have to deliver them some 430 years later.

 

Here is the heart of Joseph as he deals with his brothers who have not forgiven themselves for what they did to him.

 

Gen 50:15-17

When Joseph's brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, "What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?"

            So they sent word to Joseph, saying, "Your father left these instructions before he died:  'this is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.' Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father." When their message came to him, Joseph wept.

 

I can hear Joseph saying to his brothers in his heart, “I am so grieved that you have not known me. You were delivered into my hand and I could not do anything but love you because you are my brothers, the very seed of my father. My heart could not imagine evil against you, nor have I withheld my love and acceptance from you. I am only hurt that you have not seen me as I truly am.”

 

The very fear they had of reprisal kept them from seeing and enjoying the love of their brother more for so long. Their own  lack of forgiveness toward themselves blinded their eyes to the love he had for them. How they must have dreaded and worried about that day when their father would pass away and they would be left to answer to Joseph for what they had done. I wonder to what extent this caused them to distance themselves from Joseph while their father was yet living? It must have been terribly frustrating for them to live with that hanging over their head all that time when they could have been enjoying Joseph's forgiveness and fellowship.

 

Oh Heavenly Father, please teach us to forgive as you forgive. Help us to understand the need for forgiveness in the Body of Messiah. Let us love one another as you have loved us and let us accept one another even as you have accepted us. Let your love cover us and thereby cover a multitude of sins, which we have committed against one another by allowing ourselves to become divided. Teach us to love your truth, your people, and your mercy with clean hearts. Remove from us any root of bitterness that could contaminate the water flowing from our innermost being. Set us free from all unforgiveness this very day in the name of Yahshua our Savior. Amen

Grow in the knowledge of His Word and be blessed.

Shalom Aleichem (Peace be unto you)  

Francisco Gomez Luna

 

 

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