Myth #5: Forgiveness takes place when we declare the offender forgiven.
Truth: The words “I forgive you” in themselves are not a magic incantation.
These words do not automatically result in forgiveness. Forgiveness is sometimes thought of as an act of the will, summoning the willpower to say those words aloud. But true forgiveness goes deeper than that. When true forgiveness takes place, the anger isn’t buried; it’s gone.
How is this possible? It’s only possible when Jesus grants us the truth that sets us free. That is, He shares with us God’s perspective on what happened and where we stand after we sustained the damage that we did. Once we see things from God’s perspective, forgiving others is easy. Until we do, it’s impossible.
More next time.
These thoughts are adapted from Chapter 5 of Dwight’s book, Spiritual Self Defense. More info here:
Answer from last time: Bethlehem is the hometown of King David.
New question: King Saul and King David were both selected for their role as king by what Old Testament prophet?