Summary: Part 2 of our Faith sseries - True Forgiveness.
PART 2 – TRUE FORGIVENESS
First Baptist Church of Tawas City Michigan
Rev. Bruce A. Shields
• Visitors (Visitor Cards & Prayer Request Cards in pews)
Last week we talked about Faith and unforgiveness, and how unforgiveness can cause a roadblock and prevent God from working in your life.
We talked about how unforgiveness and gossip are sins against God, and Jesus tells us not to talk about our brothers and sisters or we will be in danger of the fire of hell.
These sins create a roadblock preventing God from answering our prayers, or working in our lives.
Today we are going to discuss true forgiveness and how important it is to church growth and health.
Most churches are made up of people who have come out of denominational churches, and many may still be holding grudges against their former church.
You may say, “They did me wrong. They taught unbelief”, or whatever the grumbling may be.
Even if they did you wrong or taught you wrong, you can not hold a grudge if you expect God to use you.
Let what happened be between God and them.
Do not let yourself be cut off from the flow of God’s presence by holding a grudge or giving a bad report.
Many churches today have problems because people in the congregation hold grudges against each other.
They sit in the congregation, thinking they’ve been wronged and, without realizing it, play into the devil’s hands.
They keep the power of God from being able to move effectively among the whole body of believers because they’re thinking;
I could run that committee better than that! I don’t know why they picked that person; I think so and so could do better.
Or, I wish the pastor would shut up. He’s been preaching 35 minutes. He already said that three times – what’s he saying it again for?
If you are not careful, this kind of thing will build up resentment in you, and before you know it, you won’t want to go to church.
Instead of getting upset and acting in unforgiveness, speaking evil about someone, you should give a good report.
You should say, “Praise God for working in this body of believers. He must know what He is doing!”
You should go to the person and say, “If you need any help, I am here for you.”
That’s acting in love. That’s the way it should be, because then the enemy will have no room to get in.
The power of God can move.
How does the devil get into churches?
The same way God does, through the congregation.
We either bring God’s Holy Spirit into this place, or the devils spirit.
And it all begins with our words.
Because from the overflow of our hearts, our mouths speak!
If you are not careful, your words will ensnare you!
“If you have been trapped by what you said, ensnared by the words of your mouth, then do this, my son, to free yourself, since you have fallen into your neighbors hands: Go and humble yourself; press your plea with your neighbor! Allow no sleep to your eyes, no slumber to your eyelids. Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, like a bird from the snare of the fowler.
When our words go forth, they can ensnare us.
Like a gazelle or bird trapped by a hunter.
The only way to free ourselves, is to humble ourselves to that person we were talking about, and ask forgiveness.
Don’t wait! The scripture says allow no sleep to your eyes!
Do not let the days pass, for each day will give the devil one more day to work through your words and unforgiveness in your life.
The book of James has a lot to say about this.
James talks about the wagging tongue.
He talks about having faith.
And he exclaims, “How is your faith going to work if that tongue is always wagging?”
This happens in some people’s lives as well, God couldn’t move if He wanted to, because they’re never quiet long enough for Him to say anything to them.
I realized that one day while I was praying.
I was doing all the talking and God was just listening waiting for a chance to speak if I would ever shut up.
Words are filed with something.
They are containers.
They are either filled with hate, doubt, and unbelief, or they are filled with love, joy, peace, faith, and goodness.
You build an atmosphere with your words.
It’s the same in the spiritual realm:
Forgive and keep a good report. Let whatever flows out of your mouth be good!
We know God’s love and power and we know He wants to work in our lives.