Is Forgiveness Impossible?
Is Forgiveness Impossible?
Many times in our lives as events occur, it may seem that is impossible for us to forgive the individual that caused the hurt. That individual may continue to treat us unfairly. It may seem impossible for us to forgive but nothing is too difficult for God. We must remember that He is the One who can do the forgiving, the reconciling, through us. These events may stir us to the very core and seem outrageously costly for us to forgive. We must remember what it cost our God to forgive us the hurt that He experienced as His Son bled and died on Calvary. The blood that was shed on Calvary was required for our forgiveness. This was an act that only our God could perform. It is something that only God could do, as Oswald Chambers states: “Forgiveness is the divine miracle of the grace of God.” I believe that it is almost impossible for us to fully understand how this redemption occurs. How we are convicted of the sin in our life and then God blocks it out when we repent. The forgiveness of God means that we are forgiven and have a new relationship and identification with God.
We can take a look at Scripture as Jesus was preaching and the friends of a paralyzed individual was lowered down through the roof because the crowd was so great – Luke 5:17-26. Jesus said to the paralyzed man, “Your sins are forgiven you.” Sometimes we may feel like the Pharisees when they protested, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” They had the wrong attitude but the right question, “Who can forgive sins but God alone?” The answer to that, of course, is “no one”. This is very important to remember when we have an issue of an unresolved conflict with someone. Especially when it may have been something that we have done, or that we regret, are ashamed of, the guilt and shame leads us to say; “I just can’t forgive myself”.
We may have a well-meaning friend that has told us that we must forgive ourselves is the first step toward healing and recovery. When in fact God instructs us to deal with our heart aches by receiving His forgiveness. Paul tells us in Romans: Romans 8:31–33 (ESV) 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? 33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.
When we feel compelled to forgive ourselves isn’t that an indication that we either doubt God’s forgiveness of us or that we are simply unwilling to receive it? When God’s forgiveness is not good enough for us, then what’s so special about our forgiveness? What makes us think that our forgiveness is able to do what His forgiveness cannot? When God has forgiven us what more is there?
Micah 7:18–19 (ESV) 18 Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance? He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in steadfast love. 19 He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.
Psalm 103:9–12 (ESV) 9 He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever. 10 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. 11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; 12 as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
God is your forgiver, your only forgiver. When Jesus gave His life on the cross to pay for your sins He said, “It is finished!” The price has been paid in full.