Weekend: September 13-14, 2008
Now that we’ve looked at forgiveness, let’s think about unforgiveness—the deliberate decision to cling to 1) resentment you feel toward someone else and 2) your right to get even any way you can. It’s a mindset that says, “You hurt me. You must pay.”
What an ungodly, unscriptural attitude! And yet it is painfully evident in the hearts of far too many Christians. Therefore, we need to uncover the dark truth behind this destructive landmine. Unforgiveness . . .
• Demonstrates unwillingness to extend to others what the Lord has extended to you (Eph. 4:32). It simply means saying with your attitude that you refuse to show the grace and forgiveness of Christ to anyone else.
• Plants a root of bitterness in your heart. It may start with some simple resentment because of the way someone else acted. Then, that little seed of animosity begins to grow. Before long, a whole crop of anger, malice, and bitterness completely dominates you. If it is not dealt with early, these bitter fruits will spoil every part of your life.
• Prevents your becoming the person God wants you to be. An unforgiving spirit makes it impossible to accomplish what the heavenly Father has in mind for you. How can you expect to grow in Christ while willfully allowing bitterness to erode your heart?
The results of withholding forgiveness are obvious, and yet many believers stumble into this very trap. Don’t fall for it. Ask God to help you release any unforgiveness you have, and be reconciled to your brothers and sisters without delay.
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