Devotional for October 7, 2020

Greetings in Christ,

  Forgiveness on a human level is not the same as it is on God’s level.  We as humans can forgive someone.  We can cease to feel resentment towards another human being, or forget a debt, but our forgiveness towards another person does not compare to the level of forgiveness God gives to His creation.  God’s level of forgiveness goes much deeper and has gone on for much longer than any human can possibly undertake.  It is in the persistence of God’s forgiveness which makes it very special.  In the selected readings, we see different examples of forgiveness taking place. 

  In the reading of Jeremiah, God calls for Jeremiah to write down the words He speaks so they could be spoken later in order for the people to think about their actions and repent.  God wanted Jeremiah to record all the bad things God will do if the people did not turn from their evil ways.  As instructed, Jeremiah recorded the words of God.  The recorded words were read to the people and they turned from their evil wrong doing. 

  Paul’s words are written down in Acts as he called for the people to repent from their idol worship.  Paul’s displayed his faith in God as he called for a lame man to rise up and be healed.  The people reacted by thinking Paul was a god, and they wanted to offer sacrifices to Paul.  Paul had a hard time convincing them he was not a god and not to offer sacrifices to him.  He wanted the people to give God the credit and to ask for His forgiveness.

  Jesus enters a Pharisee’s house to dine.  A woman enters to clean Jesus’ feet with her tears and wipe them away with her hair.  She anoints His feet with perfume and continually kisses His feet.  Jesus’ integrity is being questioned by the Pharisee wondering if He was truly a prophet because He was allowing this woman (being of her stature a prostitute) to touch Him.  Jesus calls out to Simon and tells him a parable of forgiving debts, and then He goes on to forgive the woman of her sins for her display of faith.

  In all these acts of forgiveness, there is a level which cannot be matched by any human level.  The level of forgiveness which took place was on God’s level.  This level incorporates God’s holiness integrating itself into the actions which took place in the forgiveness of sins.   It is through the holiness of God true forgiveness can take place.  It is through the patience of God down through the history of mankind adding a genuine uniqueness to His action.  It is filled with a deep love which can only come from a true source of purity. 

  To be forgiven by God means to be pardoned from a debt of sin or pardoned from an offense.  It means to separate from the inclination to do the offense—to be set apart.  The forgiveness has holiness woven into the action of forgiving to make it truly genuine.  It is being set apart true forgiveness can take place, and it is only God’s forgiveness which can give this genuine action.

  God’s forgiveness is truly an act of love.

  “He has made His wonders to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and compassionate.”  Psalms 111:4

  “Who is like the Lord our God, Who is enthroned on high, Who humbles Himself to behold the things that are in heaven and in the earth?”  Psalms 113:5-6 

  “Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; sing praises to our God on the lyre.”  Psalms 147:7

  Lord never let us take Your forgiveness for granted and accept it as a precious gift of love.  Amen


  Mark Johnson     

  Psalm  111, 113, 147; Jeremiah 36:1-10; Acts 14:8-18; Luke 7:36-50

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