8 Teachings of Jesus on Prayer — Teaching #8

Prayer A to Z

Jesus taught that prayer must be with forgiveness (Matthew 5:23, 24; 6:14-15; Mark 11:25-26) 

In these passages Jesus seems to be teaching us that if we have not forgiven someone we may as well not pray at all.  Mark 11:26 says, “If you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”

Jesus is not saying here that if you don’t forgive others you have lost your salvation; but He is saying that in your unwillingness to forgive someone you have cut off your fellowship with God.  Why?  Because in your sin against others (in not forgiving them) you sin against God too.  Sin always separates us from God, and so this is why when we sin He will not regard our prayers (Ps. 66:18, Jn. 9:31).

Now we know that there are many different kinds of sin, and all of them, if unconfessed will separate us…

View original post 191 more words

5 Benefits of Forgiving Others

Prayer A to Z

 

There are so many benefits you can reap when you forgive others.  I will put them into five categories:

1. Forgiving others frees us from the consequences of not forgiving. When we forgive we avoid all the consequences we have previously discussed and more.

2. Forgiving others makes healing possible. When we learn to forgive, God forgives us and cleanses us.  And through that cleansing process He thoroughly heals us of all the pain that our anger, bitterness and resentment have caused us.  Moreover He heals us from disgust and rejection we feel from ourselves (from bad habits) and from others.  His cleansing and healing process is so complete that we will feel like a new person (2 Cor. 5:17).  

3. Forgiving others leads to the growth of relationships.What not forgiving has done to destroy relationships, forgiveness will do to develop and nurture relationships.  And that is…

View original post 165 more words

Five Reasons Why Forgiving Another Seems So Difficult

Prayer A to Z

1. Pride. Pride I think is the main reason why it’s so hard to forgive. Pride makes it harder for us to trust God. We say to ourselves, I don’t want to forgive, and I don’t have to!  And so in our pride we cut off God’s help to us.

2. Fear. Fear also keeps us from His help. We say to ourselves, I’m afraid; forgiveness is too hard. Here again we are not looking to God for help; we are instead looking at our weakness, the giant who hurt us, and the huge problem ahead of us.

So pride and fear I think are the real reasons why forgiveness is so difficult and why we don’t forgive.  But I also want to give you three of the reasons (or excuses) we will give as to why forgiveness is too hard for us—so we can take a look…

View original post 399 more words

Forgiving Yourself

Prayer A to Z

 

Forgiving yourself is what you will naturally do when you accept and receive God’s forgiveness.  When you are forgiven by Him, His forgiveness flows to you and gives you the strength you need to forgive yourself.

The reason why we don’t always forgive ourselves is because we fail to see that God loves us and cares for us and that He really wants to forgive us.  And so we fail to truly repent of our sins—thus the guilt of our sins remains with us.  Accordingly, because we are unable to trust the sacrifice of Christ for us, we feel the need to punish ourselves, to tell ourselves how dumb and stupid we are, to restrict ourselves from fellowship, and to wallow in our guilt.  Some have tried to starve themselves, and to cut themselves; some viciously mutilate themselves.  I think one of the more common ways people punish…

View original post 180 more words

How to Receive and Be Cleansed By God’s Forgiveness

Prayer A to Z

 

God’s forgiveness is a gift that we receive by faith.  Just as we were saved by His grace through faith (Eph. 2:8-9), His constant, day by day forgiveness also comes by grace through faith.  We can’t earn it by works, nor do we deserve it; we receive it by faith.  And the way we begin to have faith in Him is by coming to Him in prayer with a broken and humble heart—to confess our sins and repent.  Then when God sees that we are genuine in our repentance, He will freely offer us His gift of forgiveness and cleansing.

But how do we begin to confess and to genuinely turn from our sins?  How does this happen?  Well, to begin with, God moves in us to change our heart.  But then when you feel Him moving you, it is up to you to respond.  You must trust Him…

View original post 150 more words

How to Forgive: 9 Steps to Follow

Prayer A to Z

According to Matthew 5:23-24, the first thing we are to do when we remember that someone has something against us, is to go quickly and make friends with him, even if we are in the middle of prayer.  In fact, that is the time that the Holy Spirit will bring it to your mind.  And really, it doesn’t matter who the offender is, whether it is another that offended you or you that offended another, you are responsible to go and make reconciliation.  Don’t think that he must go to you.  When you meet him you must confront him in love.  If he has sinned you are to reprove him, but in private (Matt. 18:15).  If you have sinned then you must confess to him and ask his forgiveness.  If we practice this law of reconciliation then we will live in freedom from the chains of bitterness. 

But what if…

View original post 275 more words

The Consequences of Not Forgiving: Five Progressive Steps

Prayer A to Z

 

 D. L. Moody, in his book, Prevailing prayer, said, “…When you go into the door of God’s kingdom, you go in through the door of forgiveness…If we are unwilling to forgive others, God cannot forgive us.”  Consequently, if He doesn’t forgive us of sins, then they remain with us to create havoc on our body and soul.  We will discuss now that havoc in five progressive steps:

 1.  Fellowship with God is lost.  My relationship with God depends on my relationship with others.  For His love for us and for our neighbors cannot be separated.  He loves us all the same, and He loves the whole world (Jn. 3:16).  Therefore, when we refuse to love and forgive a person whom He loves and forgives, we are cutting ourselves off from His flow of love and forgiveness to us (Matt. 6:15), because we in a sense are…

View original post 916 more words

Forgiving Our Offenders: What It Should Look Like, 6 Points

Prayer A to Z

 

Our forgiveness of others should look actually the same as God’s forgiveness to us (look at my post right before this one—Understanding God’s Forgiveness).  There should be no difference; forgiveness is forgiveness.  Of course, since we are human, our forgiveness will not be as complete as His is; however, the nature of our forgiveness and its aim should be exactly like His in every way.  So as we plan to forgive others we must endeavor to make our forgiveness as His.  He has set the example and the standard for us.  Now here are six aspects or parts of forgiveness, which taken together, will help you to see the big picture of what it should look like.

 1.  It is confrontational.  First of all, we must understand that though we should always unconditionally love our offender (as God has loved us), we should never offer…

View original post 970 more words

Understanding God’s Forgiveness: 5 points

Prayer A to Z

Here’s another post from my book Prayer A to Z.

1. His forgiveness is rooted in His unconditional love.  Though God does not always forgive everyone—He forgives only those who will repent of their sins—He does love everyone unconditionally.  And that unconditional love is what draws sinners to repent so that He can forgive them.  Thus, forgiveness is always contingent on repentance; but that doesn’t mean that He doesn’t always love us.  He has always loved us and He always will, because that is His nature; God is love; it comes out of His own righteous and merciful character (Titus 3:4).  God loves the whole world and He desires all to repent so that He can forgive them (2 Pet. 3:9).

2.  His forgiveness was costly for Him.  God purchased our forgiveness by the blood of His own son Jesus.  Ephesians 1:7 says, “In Him [Jesus] we have…

View original post 648 more words

Jesus and the Pharisees: John 8:3-11

This is our thirty-fourth study. Please click HERE for an introduction to this study.

John 8:3-11

3 The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4 and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6 They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.”  8 Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

9 At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”

11 “No one, sir,” she said.

“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

Observations

The Pharisees knew that Jesus was merciful to such women, and so they tried to trap Him into doing something contrary to the law. But Jesus turned the tables on them. He appealed to their conscience, to their own sin. He got them to look at their own sin. Suddenly, they had no interest in condemning her.

Application

Jesus here by taking away her witnesses automatically frees her from the law (since the law says that in order to condemn someone there must be at least two witnesses). He forgives her and sets her on a new life without sin.