Forgiving vs. Forsaking - Pt. 1
Updated: Feb 27, 2018
We have all been there. Knees shaking, knowing that we are about to either be confronted, or do the confronting. The process of communication and reconciliation in friendships is almost always difficult. Yet this process is inevitable if we truly want to experience deep, lasting, and healthy relationships. The only alternative to this is to live a deflated life, as we float away from the perilous, jagged edges of prospective friendships or relationships. The Bible says in Proverbs 18:24,
"A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly:
and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother."
The word "friendly" is combined of the meaning to not only express love to another, but to also be lovely. In other words, all relationships take work from both parties! Yet, lately, I have observed a curious, yet dangerous trend. People who strive NOT to work at friendships, but rather willingly, and at times forcibly, destroy friendships. Many today, due to the wide use of social media, employ a type of scorched earth policy when it comes to friendships. blocking, hiding, and smearing the wrong doer both publicly and privately. Admittedly, there are "good" and "bad" friends, and we may dive into that rabbit hole in another meditation, but we must all start with the premise that the scriptures do.
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;"
- Romans 3:23
None of us, are the "perfect" friend. We all will either make a mistake, say the wrong thing, or be misunderstood. So, how do we mend the lacerations that will inevitably occur when broken people come in contact with broken people? Well, who better to consult than the Great Physician Himself. In Matthew 5:21-25 and Matthew 18:15-17, Jesus teaches some invaluable truths about forgiveness. We will be looking over these passages to glean what Christ teaches here, but as our foundation, notice two small sections from each passage.
"Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar; and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift."
- Matthew 5:23-24
"Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee,
thou hast gained thy brother."
- Matthew 18:15
In both of these passages, very simply, two parties are addressed. The one who did the hurting, the other who was hurt. Yet the instruction is the same for both. To seek out the other party in an effort to reconcile, and salvage the relationship. Again, bad friendships exist and should be avoided, yet I believe that many of us burn the bridge too early. Reacting at the moment we perceive the possibility of some kind of dirt or smudge on the external structure of our relationships.
Again, we will look at various aspects of these passages over the next few weeks, but today's challenge is simply this. Is there someone you have wronged? Have you been wronged by someone? The tracks of forgiveness run both ways. Hear the words of Jesus as he cries for both of you to meet in the middle. To come seeking to forgive, or find forgiveness.
- Pastor Knight
Colossians 3:12-17 KJV
 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;  Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also [do] ye.  And above all these things [put on] charity, which is the bond of perfectness.  And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.  And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, [do] all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.