Forgiven People Forgive Others
“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others” (Colossians 3:13 NLT).
A lot of people think God carries grudges. They picture God up in heaven, waiting to zap them for anything they do wrong.
Here’s what God is really like: “I am the God who forgives your sins, and I do this because of who I am. I will not hold your sins against you” (Isaiah 43:25 GNT). God wants to forgive, and he has done everything necessary to forgive our sins in Christ.
Even before the world was made, God was already planning in Christ to forgive your sins. He knows every wrong thing you’re going to do. None of it surprises him! All the guilt that’s in your life, God made a plan to offer you forgiveness for it even before you were born.
That’s why God can say this: “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1 NIV). Condemnation is gone because of what Jesus Christ did for us—that means unconditional, complete, consistent, eternal, by-grace forgiveness in all of our lives. What a relief! You don’t have to suffer or pay for your sins now or in eternity. It’s paid for by Jesus Christ. You are forgiven if you accept that gift of salvation from Jesus.
Once you recognize that you’re forgiven, you are then enabled and strengthened to forgive other people.
How do you do that? “Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others” (Colossians 3:13 NLT).
Take a good look at yourself, and you may see ugliness, selfishness, and sin. But the important thing is how God sees you. You are his creation, a masterpiece designed to live for him and bless others.
When you take a good look through God’s eyes, you see the forgiveness that only he can give. By accepting his forgiveness in your life, you’ll be able to offer it to others.
Talk It Over
To whom do you need to offer forgiveness today?
Is someone in your life hurting because they are carrying around guilt? How can you share hope by telling them that Jesus has covered their sin and offers them the gift of forgiveness?
Why is it hard for us to accept what we are not willing to give?
This devotional © 2020 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.