But God- Forgive and Forget?

Greetings,

"The Bible says that God not only forgives our sins, He forgets them too. I forgive people when they wrong me, but I can’t seem to forget what they’ve done. Does that mean I haven’t truly forgiven them?”

But God Image_Color_CrossThat’s a really good question. In response, let’s first look at what it means to forgive someone. Forgiveness means to voluntarily choose to release the offender from any obligation they might have to you as a result of their offense. This is a choice I make between me and God. So, if you’ve chosen to release someone from what they owe you, then you have indeed forgiven them. End of discussion. BUT, this is where we get deceived sometimes….God does NOT command us to forget the offense. I want to visit about two of the reasons He hasn’t commanded us to forget others’ offenses.

First- He has gifted us with brains that don’t forget. Technically we don’t forget things, we sometimes don’t recall them. I remembered friends from 50 years ago the other day-by a truck! I can honestly say I hadn’t thought of them for 50 years, but I hadn’t forgotten them, I simply hadn’t been remembering them. That’s one reason He doesn’t command us to forget offenses done toward me, I can’t.

Second- He only commands us to do what He does. He does not forget our sins! What??? I thought He did. God is omniscient. Allow me to clarify; He doesn’t forget them, BUT, He doesn’t remember them. Sounds like I’m contradicting myself, but I’m not. I’m just saying what the Bible says. In Hebrews 10:17 God says this; “And their sins and lawless deeds I will remember no more.” To understand what is being said here let’s break down the word remember. Remember is made up of two words; the first is ‘re’, which means ‘to return to a previous condition’. The second word, ‘member’ means ‘’one of a group, one that belongs, part of a body’. Therefore, the meaning of the word remember here means ’to return something to its previous condition by making it belong again’. If God was to remember our sins after forgiving them, it would mean He was reattaching them to us. BUT NO! He has chosen to not remember them-forever. He has, for all eternity removed them from us as far as the east is from the west.(Psalm 103:12) The wonderful detail about that verse is that east and west never, ever, meet. North and south meet- at the poles- but east and west never meet- and that is how far He has removed them from us.

So, when you forgive someone, choose not to remember the offense. Follow the direction of Philippians 4:8, and ‘remember’ the things above; the things that are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, anything praise worthy. Attaching your mind to these things will release you from dwelling on others’ offenses- or your own.

That’s it for this time. Keep those questions coming.

Blessings,

Thomas

Thomas@robinsonoutdoors.com

 

If you want to know what someone really thinks, just listen to what they say after the word ‘but’ …so it is here with…”but God!”“

Note: “but God” is a weekly ministry of Robinson Outdoors Products written for us by pastor and spiritual counselor, Thomas Paige. “But God” is posted each week on the ScentBlocker website and can be found there along with the archives of messages of past years and months from Thomas. “But God” is also posted each week on ScentBlocker Facebook page and on Twitter.

You may ask, “why would Robinson, an outdoor products company with brands ScentBlocker and Tree Spider, making products for hunters, spend its time on something like “but God”?” Great question, as we here at Robinson consider our work place our mission field, our products bearing the John 3:16 inscription our outreach. In every new ScentBlocker jacket there is a laminated waterproof pocket insert that contains the salvation message printed in two languages. And, we ask the Lord to provide more opportunities for us to be a light unto a dark world.

What responses do we receive from our customers? Each week thousands and thousands of people read the “but God” message online. We receive dozens and dozens of appreciative emails, rejoicing that a company has the courage to stand up for what it believes despite perhaps it not being the most popular thing to do these days. God has blessed our lives and our business!

I hope you will enjoy this weeks’ “…but God” as Thomas continues the series, unto the Lord!

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