February 13, 2023
The Bible Edge
Everyone needs an Edge, Believers can have the Bible Edge
And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.
Forgive as you are forgiven. These are easy words to say, easy to write, and easy to advise others, but to live these words…not so easy. In every relationship, there must be an element of forgiveness. Often, relationships thrive or die based simply upon forgiveness.
In our relationship with an Almighty, Holy, Perfect God in Heaven there must be forgiveness from Him to us. It is the only way to have a relationship with Him, He must forgive us our sins against Him. He does, over and over and over again. No one comes to God through Christ hoping for limited forgiveness. No one prays “Lord, please forgive me of some of my sins.” When we approach God asking for forgiveness we desire forgiveness for all sin, even those sins we commit over and over and over again. We ask, and expect forgiveness.
Rightly so, for God Himself, in His Word promises forgiveness of confessed sins. I John 1:9 is one such promise: If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. The Father in Heaven is ready and able, through the sacrifice of His Son on Calvary, to forgive sin. He requests that we do likewise. In today’s verse there is an Edge on forgiveness. No doubt this verse appeals to those who have been forgiven by God to forgive others, but it also gives us an Edge on how.
For Christ’s sake. If there is no other reason to forgive others, and there are multiple reasons to do so, there is this one. Forgive for Christ’s sake. For the sake of Christ, forgive one another. Christ’s purpose on this earth is the redemption of fallen man and to build His churches. For His purpose, for His sake, learn to forgive even as you have been forgiven. In doing so His purposes face far fewer hindrances. If forgiveness is difficult to extend, think not of this grace only in the context of self, but also in the context of “Will my forgiveness of another assist the purpose of Christ on earth?” This may be just the edge one needs to fully forgive another their trespasses. Do it for the cause, purpose, or sake of Christ.
By the way, a person filled with unforgiveness is like a person dying of thirst while being up to their neck in fresh water. Now that is not a Bible Edge, but it’s a good one!
William Howe, Ph.D.