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Summary: Are you willing to hand of Free Samples? Joseph had a choice to either forgive or not to forgive. He made the right choice will you?

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(Pastor takes tray of food and hands out free samples to the congregation)

BUMPER

A. God’s looking for AN Average JOE to give out FREE SAMPLES

1. But the problem with this PARTICULAR FREE SAMPLE

2. Not every AJ wants to participate

FREE SAMPLES OF FORGIVENESS

ILL: JOEseph – At 17 hated by his brothers, PIT, Sold to Slavery, Wrongly accused, Prison, Palace. All this took 13 years

1. 7 years of PROSPERITY, 2 years of FAMINE, JOE’s 39 years old

2. Brothers come to Egypt wanting food.

AFTER A COURSE OF EVENTS IN TELLS THEM WHO HE IS

Genesis 45:5 (NIV)

And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling

me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you.

FORGIVENESS

A. The AJ loves to receive CHRIST FORGIVENESS.

1. There’s no greatest thing in the entire world BUT TO BE FORGIVEN.

2. To be released from all guilt and conviction, to be restored by Christ.

WHAT AJ DOESN’T LOVE THAT FEELING

B. Then why is it so hard for AJ to “FREELY HAND OUT FORGIVENESS”?

1. What we do, instead of handing out FREE SAMPLES we do THIS:

ILL: (Go to someone and give sample, but ask for money back)

C. We put a PRICE TAG on it.

1. When we finally hand out FORGIVENESS.

2. We says things like,

“You know you hurt me, RIGHT” SO, you know you’re going to PAY, RIGHT”

“I’ll say I’m SORRY, if you tell me why you did that”

D. Just think if JESUS would have said those things to us.

Put restrictions on it

Hebrews 8:12 (NIV)

For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.

1. Says in MICAH 7 that He throws them into the bottom of a ocean.

2. God wants forgiveness to be free – no strings attached, no demands, etc.

PHYSICAL & EMOTIONAL CONSEQUENCES OF UNFORGIVENESS

Stanford Forgiveness Project -

Trained 260 adults in the act of forgiveness in a 6-week course.

• 70% reported a decrease in their feelings of hurt

• 13% experienced reduced anger

• 27% experienced fewer physical complaints (such as less pain, gastrointestinal upset, dizziness)

-People who learn to forgive seem to have fewer Cardiovascular problems

-Lowers high blood pressure

-Fewer symptoms of depression

-They have a higher SELF-ESTEEM

SPIRITUAL CONSEQUENCES OF UNFORGIVENESS

Matthew 6:14-15 NIV

For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly

Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins,

your Father will not forgive your sins.

1 John 4:20 (NIV)

If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For

anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love

God, whom he has not seen.

F. I could stand up here and tell you that you just need to forgive and life will be a “bed of roses”.

1. But there is SO MUCH that goes into forgiving.

2. When I forgive, I’m Not Only Saying I want to make myself a better person, but I want to make you a better person.

TRUST VS. PROTECTION

A. We see in GEN. 42 when JOE first recognized his brothers he was BLINDSIDED.


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