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The Case for Forgiveness

Charles Skinner

Harvest Church of Walterboro

Charles.L.Skinner@gmail.com

Life certainly has it’s ups and downs. Some of its hurts are so deep that to forgive the person who caused them seems like an impossible task. However, Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, said that we couldn’t experience His forgiveness unless we forgive those who have offended us.
During World War II, Corrie Ten Boom and her sister Betsie, after being arrested for concealing Jews, were sent to a German concentration camp. Betsie died there a slow and terrible death as a result of the cruel treatment.
While Corrie was speaking about forgiveness at a church in Munich in 1947 she encountered one of the prison guards who had abused her and her sister. He told her that he had become a Christian, extended his hand, and asked her for forgiveness. Corrie struggled with her emotions, then recalled Jesus’ words from the Sermon on the Mount, and knew she had to forgive. Silently she asked God for help and thrust her hand into the hand of her former torturer.
Forgiveness is not a case of “holy amnesia” that wipes out the past, but an experience of healing which drains the poison from the wound.
God asks us to do for others, and ourselves, what He has done for us through Jesus Christ. He’ll give you the strength to forgive.
Our second story deals with the Nazis once again. During WWII, England’s historic Coventry Cathedral was devastated when it was blitzed byNazi planes. Amid the ruins, authorities placed a large wooden cross made from two charred beams of wood from the destruction. On the cross were engraved the words, “Father, forgive.” Not Jesus’ words from Luke 23:34, “Father, forgive them;” but simply, Father, Forgive.”
Those two simple words remind us that not only were the Nazis in need of forgiveness, but we all are. We may see some of our sins merely as little misdeeds, while Hitler’s holocaust and Stalin’s Gulag seem like enormous abominations. However, remember, we humans don’t determine the magnitude of sins; only God can determine if one sin is more significant than another. One thing is clear: “We all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). Jesus Christ demonstrated God’s standard of perfect obedience. All of us, whether victims or perpetrators stand in helpless need of His divine forgiveness (Romans 3:10).
The glorious message of the gospel is that God has provided salvation to everyone who accepts His Son Jesus Christ (Romans 6:23; 8)
If you’re looking for a loving and friendly church then we invite you to come and worship with us at Harvest Church of Walterboro, located at 1130 North Jefferies Blvd (In Oswald Square) Service times are Sunday school:10:00 AM; Worship 11:00 AM, Midweek- Wed. at 7:00 PM. Charles Skinner is the Associate Pastor of Harvest Church. James Pellum is the pastor.

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