In the message “The Mind of Christ” we considered our call to walk according to the new life we have already been given. We then looked at several aspects of the life of Christ as our solid example to follow. We saw His walk of humility as well as His desire to serve and glorify the Father; but probably the most challenging aspect of Jesus’ life was His ability to forgive; “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).
The walk of a Christian is a life-long process of being transformed into the likeness of Jesus. This process brings us continually closer to God and, in a very real way, shows the gospel message to the world. There is no clearer demonstration of a transformed heart and true love for Christ than when we forgive one another. The simple fact that it’s so difficult makes forgiveness a blazing light into a dark and dying world. The unity obtained through forgiveness causes those in the world to be drawn closer to Christ.
“May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me.”
Being united is never a call to compromise the essential truths of the gospel; but it is clearly a call to put aside quarreling over trivial issues and stamp out all jealously, envy, and, one of the greatest evils known to man, pride! Pride keeps more people separated from God and more relationships locked in unforgiveness than any other sin.
Continued forgiveness demonstrates the gospel because it requires us to honestly face our pride, place our trust in God, and walk in absolute humility. Forgiveness is not something we can do in our own strength. When we have been wounded, unfairly treated and misunderstood, our pride wants things to be “even” – it demands the other person confess and repent, to somehow humble themselves and seek our favor. True forgiveness of others brings us back to the cross where we must confess the ugliness of our heart, acknowledge our need for God’s forgiveness, and, once again, remove ourselves from the throne of control.
Continued forgiveness requires a daily crucifixion of our fleshly, pride-filled self, and a submission to the leading of the Holy Spirit. It requires a complete trust in our Heavenly Father to continue the process He has begun in our life and to fully work in the life of others according to His perfect timing. This is a life which definitely shines and causes the world to notice.
Let’s take a new look at all unforgiveness and determine once and for all to give our pride to God. Let’s glorify our Father and become a living example of the gospel. Let’s live in unity through love and forgiveness…so the world may know!
Have a Christ Centered Day!
God’s Daily Word Ministries
**** Reading Plan ****
May 22 2 Samuel 1:1-2:11; John 12:20-50; Psalm 118:19-29; Proverbs 15:27-28