2 Corinthians 2:5-11
5 Suppose someone has made us sad. In some ways, he hasn’t made me sad so much as he has made all of you sad. But I don’t want to put this too strongly. 6 He has been punished because most of you decided he should be. That is enough for him. 7 Now you should forgive him and comfort him. Then he won’t be sad more than he can stand. 8 So I’m asking you to tell him again that you still love him. 9 I wrote to you for a special reason. I wanted to see if you could stand the test. I wanted to see if you could obey everything that was asked of you. 10 Anyone you forgive I also forgive. Was there anything to forgive? If so, I have forgiven it for your benefit, knowing that Christ is watching. 11 We don’t want Satan to outsmart us. We know how he does his evil work.
To forgive is a promise that you make to someone who has offended you and now has repented, where you say “I will not let my attitude toward you be ruled any longer by this offense” The way I treat you is as if the offense never happened. It is a promise to never to bring it up again.
Forgiveness is a promise not to pass it on to anybody else. Now it is forgiven, it is forgotten. Nobody should bring the issue again, hold it over a forgiven person’s head or reminds them of it every time any future difficulty happens. It is a promise to drop the matter, leave it in the past, and never bring it up to anybody again.
Forgiveness is a promise to yourself that when your memory goes back to it, you are not going to allow it to push those buttons and make you angry all over again. The minute it comes back to mind, put it aside as something that belongs to the past. Refuse to dwell on it. It is a promise, therefore, to repeat your act of forgiveness, no matter how often the memory comes up.
The reason we do this is because we have been forgiven. Remember to be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ forgave you.
Lord, when you died on the cross, you forgave me of everything, and I can forgive everything in Your strength. Your Spirit in me means I have your strength and life, this means I can forgive the person and the offense.
Written by Cath Croft