Monday, July 5, 2010

Asking Questions---Forgiveness

I am a volunteer writer for the website GotQuestions. People who come to that website can browse a huge data base of already asked and answered questions or they can submit a question which is assigned to a writer to answer. I thought as I had opportunity to answer some of these questions, I would share them in a series of posts under the label "Asking Questions". I pray that you are encouraged.

Q-At what point do you stop seeking forgiveness from someone who is not willing to give it? Will God still forgive you if they will not?

A-In Matthew 5:23-24, Matthew records that Jesus taught `Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering.` Therefore, we must certainly seek to be reconciled with other people when we wrong them. I don`t find that this text or any Bible passage that teaches we are to continuously plead with someone to forgive if they won`t. If a person has tried several times sincerely to ask forgiveness for a sin and the person they are asking forgiveness from withholds it, I believe they`ve done all they can.

God`s forgiveness of our sins does not depend on whether the person that we wronged forgives us or not. First of all, any sin, even those committed against someone else, are ultimately sins against God. As David writes in Psalm 51:4 `Against You, You only, I have sinned and done what is evil in Your sight, so that You are justified when You speak and blameless when You judge.` Secondly, God has promised to forgive us of our sins when we confess them and repent. John writes in the first chapter of his first epistle `If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (verse 9)` Notice, there is no condition ` long as the person who you wronged forgives you...` added to that statement. When we repent and ask God to forgive us, He does it. We should praise God for being so merciful to us.


selahV said...

Joe, have you been reading my drafts? ha ha. I have this very scripture in a post I'd been working on.

One thing. I've learned that I can forgive another for not having forgiveness for me and be quite content in life. It is like when Jesus said, "Forgive them for they know not what they do." I truly believe there are those folks in our lives who cannot comprehend their sinful cold hearts. They are blind to their own sin. So they are unable to forgive others. Therefore, for me to be free from the bondage of sin, I can forgive and be a happy camper. Ya know?

I like your post. I look forward to more of them. selahV

Joe Blackmon said...


Haa. I have not been reading your drafts. What's that they say about great minds?

Thank you for your encouragement.