Understanding GOD'S
Overall Plan
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Arenít Christians supposed to forgive everybody, no matter what they do to you?

Iím glad you asked.  Many Christians and non-Christians wrongly believe that a Christian has to forgive no matter what the circumstances.  Now before you get upset, letís look at what the Bible has to say for it does not matter what you and I think is true, if it is not in our Fatherís word.

In Matthew we find Jesus telling His disciples about forgiveness.  Matthew 18:21 Then came Peter to Him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Till seven times? 22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto the, until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.  After reading this, most would say ďsee I told you so.Ē Now if that was all the information we had, I would agree with you.  Before we decide too quickly letís go to Luke 17:3.  Take heed to yourselves: ďIf thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him and if he repent, forgive him.  4 and if he trespass against thee seven times in a day and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou salt forgive him.Ē Now we see the forgiveness has a condition attached to it.  Jesus is saying, ďRebuke him and if he repent forgive him.Ē

Now, if you want to forgive him no matter what, that is up to you.  Godís way is to rebuke him.  In other words use tough love in order that you might really help him by causing him to see the error of his ways.

Websterís Dictionary gives the definition of rebuke as: to blame or scold in a sharp way; reprimand.  The Greek Dictionary gives the word rebuke as ďepitimaoĒ which means censure or admonish; forbid.  So we see you are not obligated to forgive a wrong done unless the person is sorry for what they have done and ask for forgiveness.

Now, to take this a step further letís go to I John 3:15 last part of the verse.  And ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.  Careful study will show that murder is not even forgiven by God in this flesh life.  The murderer is to be executed and sent to the real Judge who is God.  As far as I can tell, if someone murders your friend or loved one, you are not obligated to forgive him in this life.  I know that most donít teach this, but thatís the way it is.  Let me ask you, is a person that has done you wrong helped more by forgiving him no matter what or by bringing them up short and making them think about what they have done?

We have too many Christians believing they are doing Godís will by acting like door mats when someone runs over them.  Christians are supposed to be salty.  What does salt do when added to food? It changes the flavor for the better.  It makes a difference.  Christians are not supposed to be milk toast weaklings.  Stand up for what is right and make a difference. 

Christians are not second or third class citizens.  They are not doormats to be walked on by abusive people as some churches teach.  If you are a Christ man, a Christian, you are a child of the Most High God.  So act like it and conduct your life as though you are.

From: Understanding GOD'S Overall Plan
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