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Dealing with Difficult People - Part II

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Sermon shared by Carl Willis

June 2004
Summary: How many times should I forgive? What are the steps of reconciliation?
Audience: General adults
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You Do The Math
Dealing With Difficult People – Part II
Matthew 18:21-35

June 13, 2004
Matthew 18:21-22 (NLT)

Then Peter came to him and asked, "Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?"
[22] "No!" Jesus replied, "seventy times seven!




The Importance of Forgiveness
 Forgiveness acknowledges that a wrong has been committed
 Forgiveness changes your status from victim to victor – Matthew 5:39-41

Matthew 5:39-41 (NLT)
But I say, don’t resist an evil person! If you are slapped on the right cheek, turn the other, too. [40] If you are ordered to court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too. [41] If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles.




The Importance of Forgiveness
 Forgiveness acknowledges that a wrong has been committed
 Forgiveness changes your status from victim to victor – Matthew 5:39-41
 Forgiveness makes sense for people who have needed, do need, and will need forgiveness – Luke 6:37


Luke 6:37 (NLT)
"Stop judging others, and you will not be judged. Stop criticizing others, or it will all come back on you. If you forgive others, you will be forgiven.




The Importance of Forgiveness
 Forgiveness acknowledges that a wrong has been committed
 Forgiveness changes your status from victim to victor – Matthew 5:39-41
 Forgiveness makes sense for people who have needed, do need, and will need forgiveness – Luke 6:37
 Forgiveness is the only road to freedom
 Forgiveness is not Jesus suggestion

The Danger of Unforgiveness
 A wedge is driven between relationships
 The door is open for greater harm
 Bitterness
 Envy
 Hatred
 Others are affected by unresolved conflict

Hebrews 12:15 (HCSB)
See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no root of bitterness springs up, causing trouble and by it, defiling many.
Ephesians 4:31 (NCV)
Do not be bitter or angry or mad. Never shout angrily or say things to hurt others. Never do anything evil.
Repeat Offenders
 People are not perfect
 People will let you down many times
 Some are experts at offending others
What’s The Limit?
 The traditional limit of forgiveness was three times – Amos 1:3
Amos 1:3 (NKJV)
Thus says the Lord: “For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away its punishment, because they have threshed Gilead with implements of iron.







What’s The Limit?
 The traditional limit of forgiveness was three times – Amos 1:3
 Seven seems very generous
 Is there a limit for forgiving others? – Luke 17:4
Luke 17:4 (NLT)
Even if he wrongs you seven times a day and each time turns again and asks forgiveness, forgive him."




Seventy x Seven
 We are to extend forgiveness beyond what may at times seem reasonable
 To whom much is given…much is required – Mark 11:25

Mark 11:25 (NLT)
But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too."


**Powerpoint available on request
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