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We all have someone who we just can’t seem to forgive for what they have done. Why should we even practice forgiveness in the first place?! In this powerful message, Pastor Jeremy DeWeerdt answers age-old questions about forgiveness and what the Bible truly says about it. Forgiveness may be hard, but it is not impossible with God!

Notes 📓✏️:

Your Bucket List – Pastor Jeremy DeWeerdt

Life is made up of relationships.

Today, we are going to discuss one of the most difficult parts of relationships. Forgiveness

Bishop Desmond Tutu said, “Without forgiveness, there is no future.”

Because when I say to forgive someone, what many of us hear is…

“Letting them off the hook.” (That is not what it means)

Common Questions About Forgiveness:

1. Do I have to forgive and forget?

However, we should not fixate on the offense.

2. Is it ok to get angry about what happened?

When there is loss, there must be a season of grieving.

Optimal process:

Offense > Denial > Sadness > Anger > Forgiveness > Acceptance > Learning > Purpose

Hebrews 12:15 (J.B. Phillips) Be careful that none of you fails to respond to the grace which God gives, for if he does there can very easily spring up in him a bitter spirit which is not only bad in itself but can also poison the lives of many others.

3. Is forgiveness a one-time event?

4. Should you wait until the person who hurt you repents before you forgive?

In fact, Jesus on the cross said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.”

David Stoop, “Forgiving the Unforgiveable” – “Forgiving other people does not in any way benefit or let them off the hook. It allows us to cancel the debt they owe us, which in all probability they can never pay anyway. We are the ones who are freed – from the expectation of restitution for the wrongs done to us.”

5. Does time heal all wounds?

Just letting time pass is not the same as forgiveness.

6. If I forgive someone, does that mean I need to pursue reconciliation?

Forgiveness is NOT reconciliation.

Jesus asked his disciples how many times we should forgive someone.

• Peter answered (7 times)

• Rabbis of the day taught you only had to forgive someone 3 times.

Peter thinks: “Winning!”

Jesus replied back…

Matthew 18:22 (NLT): “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!

(490 times)

For reconciliation to happen, the other person needs to have done their part.

If not forgiveness, then what’s the alternative?

Bitterness?

Hate?

Revenge?

Carrying hurt indefinitely?

Romans 12:17-19 (NLT): “Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.”

By not returning evil for evil and instead living with kindness, you are NOT erasing the wrong.

God is a more than capable judge.

Chinese Proverb:

“He who seeks revenge should dig two graves.”

1 Peter 2:23 (NIV): “When they hurled their insults at Him, He did not retaliate; when He suffered, He made no threats. Instead, He entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly.”

Discussion Questions 📝:

  1. What makes forgiveness one of the most difficult parts of the relationships we have?
  2. Forgiveness is a difficult thing to do, what are the effects we face when we have unforgiveness in our lives?
  3. What questions were answered by Pastor Jer’s message when it comes to forgiveness? Was there something that stuck our to you?
  4. What is a prayer you have on you journey of living a life that forgives?