Forgiveness of others

Andrew

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Are we to forgive only our brothers and sisters in Church or outside the church who may have raped you, stolen from you, beat you etc...
The Lords Prayer implies all who have trespassed.
I assume that the few who have traumatised me in the past and who care not to change their ways -I should still forgive them in heart, most likely I may never come across them again in my life, once I did and I was very hostile just in my presence, I said a few things to him and walked away never looking into his eyes even... He was stalking me and I try to avoid him because he really damaged me when I was younger, molested me in my sleep, im still very bitter towards him and he is a satanist on top of that, so should I forgive him as an unbeliever? Or does this imply to members of a church?
 

psalms 91

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You touch on a hard one my friend. Yes we are to forgive all in and out of the church. It is very hard especially when you have been hurt badly and it is a process that takes time. We need Gods strength sometimes to even come to the place where we know we need to forgive. Forgiveness is really about us and what we carry around more so than about the other person. When we can really forgive and let go it is like a burden has been lifted from us so while it may bring someone to repentance it is more about our own wellbeing.
 

Andrew

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I forgave him a few years ago through text and even offered him words of encouragement that God could rid his demons if he would come into the Faith, he blew it off...
But when he started following me from work to lunch I was really short with him, his nephew had passed away and I told him I am very sorry to hear that, prayers and condolences to the family, then he went on asking if I would play music for a get together in honor of him, he was making all that up, he just wanted to hang out again but I wasn't falling for it, he doesn't care about people dying anyway, he uses death and other means for old friends to come by and hang out, no one does... His friends were my friends and after they found out what happened they stopped hanging around him.
He has a fake girls facebook profile where in the past he has hit on me online but I knew right away who it was and exposed him, he stopped testing then... Well after the confrontation at lunch he sent me a text using her account (because he was blocked) saying "or maybe you just dont care"... Yeah he knows im a Christian now so he is using that as well to guilt trip me into going over to his house. Never going to happen... I guess I forgive him but I still dont want him in my life nor do I care to see him around.
 

psalms 91

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I forgave him a few years ago through text and even offered him words of encouragement that God could rid his demons if he would come into the Faith, he blew it off...
But when he started following me from work to lunch I was really short with him, his nephew had passed away and I told him I am very sorry to hear that, prayers and condolences to the family, then he went on asking if I would play music for a get together in honor of him, he was making all that up, he just wanted to hang out again but I wasn't falling for it, he doesn't care about people dying anyway, he uses death and other means for old friends to come by and hang out, no one does... His friends were my friends and after they found out what happened they stopped hanging around him.
He has a fake girls facebook profile where in the past he has hit on me online but I knew right away who it was and exposed him, he stopped testing then... Well after the confrontation at lunch he sent me a text using her account (because he was blocked) saying "or maybe you just dont care"... Yeah he knows im a Christian now so he is using that as well to guilt trip me into going over to his house. Never going to happen... I guess I forgive him but I still dont want him in my life nor do I care to see him around.
Forgiveness in no way says you have to allow abuse again or even be friends or be around him. As long as you can let go of the bitterness that is good for you. At some point your forgiveness and witness may bring him around but that is only between him and God. I pray that through all this you are able to come to terms with all this and move on.
 

Lämmchen

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Forgiveness does not mean you have to forego boundaries. You also don't even have to go up to every person and tell them they're forgiven. Sometimes it's beneficial to a relationship to do so and for reconciliation.

Forgiveness is a gift from you to someone else. It should not be earned by that person. That's not forgiveness. We didn't earn God's forgiveness, it's a gift.
 

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Forgiveness is a gift both for the giver and the receiver but trust is earned.
 

Josiah

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You touch on a hard one my friend. Yes we are to forgive all in and out of the church. It is very hard especially when you have been hurt badly and it is a process that takes time. We need Gods strength sometimes to even come to the place where we know we need to forgive. Forgiveness is really about us and what we carry around more so than about the other person. When we can really forgive and let go it is like a burden has been lifted from us so while it may bring someone to repentance it is more about our own wellbeing.

Good points, my friend....


Yeah, I too am struck with what Jesus stated in the Lord's Prayer and that I pray every day....

I'm also struck by Jesus on the Cross... one of the Seven Last Words.... always hits me every Good Friday.... Jesus asked the Father to forgive His unbelieving, unrepentant executioners. They didn't believe..they were not repentant... they took glee in their art of killing.... and Jesus forgives them.

I sometimes struggle to REALLY forgive the brother or sister who actually repents. I think we are to do much more than that.

Another thing. For ME, I can SAY I forgive....that I bury the hatchet.... but sometimes I leave the handle sticking out. There are STILL things - from YEARS ago - I'm still hanging onto. This ONLY hurts me AND my relationship to God. Working on that. As the post above says, forgiveness is a blessing also to the one forgiving.
 

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Forgiveness requires God's grace in us. We do not, by nature, forgive others with no conditions attached. It takes God, working in us, to forgive others.
 

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2_OOaP763k

Probably one of the most powerful examples of forgiveness one may ever get to see.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpICVJCV3pY

This is a sermon jam featuring Voddie Baucham on the topic of forgiveness. It neatly packs together what forgiveness and unforgiveness and what it means in 8 minutes. It's probably a short section of a longer sermon.
I have grown to appreciate Voddie Baucham. He has a gift of breaking things down to simple ideas. Thanks for sharing this video.
 

JPPT1974

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As we can't forgive when it is hard to do so ourselves. Only through the grace of the Lord can He help us forgive and forget. Bring healing to the situation!
 

tango

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Are we to forgive only our brothers and sisters in Church or outside the church who may have raped you, stolen from you, beat you etc...
The Lords Prayer implies all who have trespassed.
I assume that the few who have traumatised me in the past and who care not to change their ways -I should still forgive them in heart, most likely I may never come across them again in my life, once I did and I was very hostile just in my presence, I said a few things to him and walked away never looking into his eyes even... He was stalking me and I try to avoid him because he really damaged me when I was younger, molested me in my sleep, im still very bitter towards him and he is a satanist on top of that, so should I forgive him as an unbeliever? Or does this imply to members of a church?
When Jesus gave us the Lord's Prayer he said "forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us". Of course this is the same man who, on the cross, used some of his last breaths to ask God to forgive the people who had nailed him there and who were probably still standing mocking him.

It's easy to say it, not necessarily anywhere near as easy to actually live it, but Jesus never said it would be easy. I remember towards the end of Corrie ten Boom's book "The Hiding Place" she described how some years after WWII ended a combination of circumstances resulted in her meeting one of the SS guards who had badly mistreated her in one of the concentration camps (I forget if he specifically tortured her, but it's not as if those places were even remotely pleasant for the prisoners). She described how she struggled with knowing what she should do against what she wanted to do, how she prayed "God, I cannot forgive him, give me your forgiveness", and the peace she felt when she shook his hand.

A key thing with forgiveness is that it isn't about saying that whatever wrong was committed doesn't matter any more. If it didn't matter there would be no need to forgive it. It doesn't mean exposing ourselves to a comparable wrong going forward - if someone steals from you and you forgive them it doesn't mean you trust them with a key to your house. What forgiveness means is that you acknowledge the wrong that you have suffered and make the conscious decision not to hold it against the perpetrator. Forgiving the man you mentioned above doesn't involve any reduction in severity of what he did to you, you don't need to (and shouldn't) act like it was no big deal, you should acknowledge the wrong that was inflicted upon you, but make the decision that you aren't going to hold it against him any more. You don't need to be his friend, you don't need to start hanging out with him, you make the choice not to hold what he did against him and leave it there. Again, it's easier to say it than it is to do it.
 
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