FORGIVENESS      by Pastor Paul Locke

The unforgivable sins are Blaspheming the Holy Spirit, and not forgiving others.  Jesus said, “…but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or the age to come.” (Mtt 12:32)  What this means to deny the baptism of the Holy Spirit or the gifts of the Holy Spirit working in this world today.  The context of what Jesus said was in response to the comments of the Pharisees attributing the work of the Holy Spirit to Beelzebub.  Sadly there are some cultish mainline churches who allow radicals in their midst who attribute the gift of tongues to be of the devil.

Not to forgive others is the next major hurdle as Jesus said, “Forgive and you will be forgiven.” (Lk 6:37)  An African Pastor who was killed in a car accident and raised to life through the prayer of Reinhard Bonnke after being officially dead for three days gave his testimony.  He was told in hell that he was there because he would not forgive his wife.  Make no mistake about it that unforgiveness is a sin that we should avoid at all costs.  As soon as you become aware of holding a grudge; be quick to forgive that person because otherwise it is like spitting in your own face.

Causing people to sin also has harsh penalties as Jesus said, “But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and be drowned in the depths of the sea.” (Mtt 18:6-7)  A recent episode was a neighbour who took offence at me because she had a religious spirit.  Her prayer partner instead of lovingly correcting her has fed the offence causing her to stay in sin.  Moved by God I wrote a clear note asking her to forgive me for the offence, and she would not.  If you break the hedge the serpent will bite you.  The devil is the serpent looking for an opening through sin.  Satan replied to God about Job, “Have you not put a hedge around him?”   That same day that unforgiving woman fell and broke her arm in three places and been hospitalised for six weeks.  I pity her prayer partner.

As born again Christians we have been given an awesome task as Jesus said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.  If you forgive anyone his sins they are forgiven; (Jhn 20:23) if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”  Jesus commanded us to do as he did and teach others to do the same.  The self test of our Christianity is 1John 2:3-11 and questions we should ask; “Am I obedient, do I walk as Jesus did, do I love my brother?”  Having passed the test forgiveness is not a problem for you

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