FORGIVEN AND FORGIVING
MATT. 6:12 PART TWO
Last week Christ taught us in His prayer to pray “give us our daily bread”, that was to be a constant reminder that we are creatures needing humility and dependence.
Today Jesus Christ tells us that if you are forgiven then you must be forgiving! He’s reminding us we are sinners needing contrition and repentance.
Oh be careful praying this petition Augustine called terrible! Why? If praying with unforgiving spirit you are telling God not to forgive you! Charles Haddon Spurgeon said “unless you have forgiven others you read your own death warrant when you pray this petition”.
Wouldn’t it be great to be able to do a quick test to see if we are in good health spiritually? You know, like the doctor’s office, poke —blood — test — cholesteral is ok, etc.!
Well, let me introduce the spiritual health test (Mt. 6:12):
MacArthur says: If you are not forgiving, that isn’t the new you, that’s your sinful flesh vaulting itself into prominence. When you do that, you will cut yourself off from that relational forgiveness with God that makes communing with Him sweet. If you look at your spiritual life and see a lack of power and depth, a lack of a hunger for
God’s Word, and a lack of love for the private place of prayer and communion, resulting in the loss of the richness in your relationship with God, it may be that there is a barrier of unforgiveness that you have built which is preventing the Lord from giving you the forgiveness that issues in a sweet relationship with Him. If that is the case in your life, the Lord isn’t going to open up the flow of communion with Him until you forgive where forgiveness is needed.
This fifth petition can check your health if you’re a Christian and is even a test of Christianity! How?
Join me on a two part message:
1. FORGIVEN (that’s what a Christian is) 2. FORGIVING (that’s what a Christian does that is healthy)
Romans 3:10 None righteous 3:23 All sinned 6:23 All deserve death Titus 3:2-6 The way we were
BCF Guide lists: Adultery, outbursts of anger, anorexia, arrogance, bitterness, bulimia, ineffective or evil communications, depression, lack of discipline in specific areas, drunkenness, fear, financial problems, fornication, frustration, gluttony, greed, guilt, homosexuality, impatiences, interpersonal disputes, jealousy, laziness, loneliness, lust, lying, marriage problems and failures, parent and child difficulties, pride, procrastination, rebellion, self-pity, stealing, substance abuse, suffering, unforgiving spirit, and worry.
Discover the Book Ministries | www.dtbm.org | 866.815.2601 | firstname.lastname@example.org Page 2
The New Testament describes five types of sin:
1. Hamartia – most common = “missing the mark” as in an arrow. Therefore, sin is not being what should have or could have been.
2. Parabasis – lit., “stepping across” – over line between right and wrong honesty and dishonesty kindness and selfishness etc., in that word or act. 3. Anomia – lit., lawlessness, flagrant breaking of God’s law, rebelling against Him. Note: Notice the progression in these words: a) Hamartia speaks of our incapacity, our impotence, our helplessness to hit the mark. b) Parabasis is a little more flagrant, a little more selfdirected, planned and premeditated; not restraining ourselves from going into the forbidden area. c) Anomia is open, flagrant rebellion against God; a violent reaction against God’s standards. 4. Paraptoma – means “to slip or fall.” This is the word used in Mt. 6:14, 15 translated “trespass.” It emphasizes our incapacities. It refers to the passion of the moment, the lust of the moment, or the loss of self-control in the moment where you’re just swept away. Ex: words slipped out, impulse, etc. 5. Opheilema – is the word used in Mt. 6:12 and is translated “debt,” Sin is a failure to pay what is due. This is a very interesting word. It is used only two times in the New Testament as a noun — here and in Romans 4:4. In its verb form it’s used 30 times — 25 times as a moral debt and 5 times as a money debt. But the idea is the sin is a debt. When you sin, you owe to God a consequence for your sin. In fact, in Rev. 20:11, 12 it says that at the end of the age, at the Great White
Throne judgment, God will judge the ungodly out of the books. What books? The books that record all the unpaid debt that they owe; and they are sentenced to an eternal hell to pay that debt. Sin is a debt. (Mac quoting Barclay)
SIN IS A DEBT! WHAT DO WE OWE? WE OWE OURSELVES IN TOTAL OBEDIENCE TO HIM!
So, a sinner that knows God has forgiven him is a Christian!
Thus, Point #1 — Forgiven.
But you may ask, do I have to confess my sin? Yes.
The Passage Explained: (MacArthur, Mt. 18, Study Guide) This amazing statement about forgiveness bases the forgiveness we receive upon our act of forgiving others. Jesus is talking to Christians; this is a believer’s prayer, because the nonbeliever would not be able to address God as “our Father.” This raises the question, “In what sense can a Christian have unforgiven sins?” Not in the judicial sense, which insures that your sins are covered by the blood of Christ. But a Christian can have unforgiven sin in the sense that even though his sin is covered positionally in that God has judicially paid its price through the sacrifice of Christ, he may have not confessed daily sin in order to receive that parental and relational forgiveness that keeps the communion vital and the joy full. In other words, you have been forgiven by the heart of God, but you can’t enter into the fullness of that if your relationship still has some unsettled accounts with God. It’s no different than in the relationship between a Christian and another Christian. I might forgive you in my heart the moment you sin, but we will never know the outworking of that kind of forgiveness in our
Discover the Book Ministries | www.dtbm.org | 866.815.2601 | email@example.com Page 3
relationship until you come and repent and things are made right. Jn. 13:5-10 = portrait < positional once; < practiced daily: 1 Jn. 1:8-9; Pr. 28:13; Neh. ?:17
Therefore, if you don’t forgive someone else as a Christian, two things take place: number one, you cannot know the forgiveness of God in terms of communion, fellowship, joy, and all which ought to be a part of your relationship with the Lord. Number two, you will experience the chastening of God. Because when there’s an outstanding sin account and He has not parentally forgiven that, God is going to bring to bear on your life certain chastenings to refine that unrefined area.
By the way, the debts that verse 12 is talking about are spiritual debts, or sin, which is made clear by the use of “trespasses” in verse 14 (cf. Mk. 11:25-26). Hence, we are to take the sins of others and, according to the literal Greek, hurl them away, that ours in turn may be hurled away.
Do you know the refreshing joy of being forgiven today?
The Problems Exhibited:So, you may need to examine your life. Are you looking at your life and making comments like these: “I don’t see the kind of joy I ought to see in my life. I don’t have that kind of fulfillment spiritually. I don’t seem to have the power of God in my life. It seems as though I’m always being chastened, I’m always struggling. I’ve examined my life, and I’m unaware of any moral sins”?
Point #2 — Forgiving.
You see a Christian not only knows they’ve been forgiven (Ps. 103:3, 10-12). For sins against God: Eph. 2:8-9; Heb. 10:22
But, also a healthy Christian is characterized by a forgiving spirit when others sin against us!
Carson – “Once our eyes have been opened to see the enormity of an offense against God, the injuries others have done to us appear by comparison extremely trifling. If, on the other hand, we have an exaggerated view of the offenses of others, it only proves we have minimized our own.” (Stott)
Open to Mt. 18: Jesus Christ’s great sermon on forgiven and forgiving:
* You have no right of forgiveness from God if you withhold your forgiveness from another.
Thomas Watson (Puritan) well said: “A man may as well go to hell for not forgiving as for not believing!”
R. Kent Hughes said: “If you refuse to forgive there can be only one reason – you have never understood the grace of Christ, you are thus outside His grace and unforgiven.”
The problem is not if its hard to forgive someone. The damnable error is not being willing!
The family of Jesus Christ is sick from the lack of forgiveness among His children.
– Do you need to forgive your husband or wife? Then covenant before God now to do so. – Do you need to forgive your: parents? Then… employer? Then…
Discover the Book Ministries | www.dtbm.org | 866.815.2601 | firstname.lastname@example.org Page 4
God? Then… church? Then…
You are never closer to God and more like God then when you forgive.
“O God, put in me the heart of forgiveness so that I man commune with You in the fullness of fellowship and joy and not experience the chastening that comes when You don’t forgive me. May I remember that for everyone who sins against me I have multiplied times sinned against You…and You have always forgiven me. At no point in time has any of my sin caused me to forfeit my eternal life; therefore, no one else’s sin should cause them to forfeit my love and my mercy toward them.” With the same attitude, you too can seek to pursue the restoration of fellowship.
Saphir says: 1. Our Father, who art in heaven (Infinite, endless, all powerful, pure and awesome, you who open up your family to me) 2. hallowed be Thy name (We would see Jesus who explains Your name and reveals your love to us) 3. Thy kingdom come (Remind us of Jesus our king, crucified, risen and coming to conquer back this fallen sinful world) 4. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven (Let us glimpse into Gethsemane to see the perfect embodiment of obedience in our suffering Savior sweating blood for us. Then, rule in my heart and our hearts.) 5. Give us this day our daily bread (Oh Jesus, bread of life to us, manna come down from heaven, channel of all good and perfect things to God’s children) 6. Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors (Open our hearts to Calvart’s love, to the love, the anguish, the pain, all because of my sin)
7. Lead us not into temptation (You, Lord Jesus, are our shepherd, we shall not want. Lead us in paths of righteousness) 8. But deliver us from evil (Not unto you, O Lord, who are able to deliver us from evil…) 9. For Thine is the kingdom…Amen. (Rule in our lives today. Let us seek first You, Your kingdom, Your righteousness, Your forgiveness, Your love. Amen!)