John 1:29 — John [the baptist] saw Jesus coming to him and said, "Behold [look/pay attention], the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!"
1 John 2:2 — Jesus is the propitiation (payment) for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.
When Jesus said in John 19:30 — It is finished, God placed His entire wrath upon Jesus for our sins.
This forever satisfied God’s wrath. Since that time, God hasn’t been judging our sins.
Rom 4:8 — quoting David in Ps 32:2 — Blessed is the person whose sin the Lord will not take into account (logidzomai: taking into account).
2 Cor 5:19 — God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their sins against them and he has given us the word of reconciliation. We can impart this same word and not count peoples sins against them. We have the ministry of reconciliation (restore relationship).
We are empowered to not count peoples sins against them, by forgiving as we have been forgiven.
Col 3:13 — We can forgive/pardon others just as Christ has forgiven/pardoned us.
We can retain sins or release them. John 20:21 — So Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you." (22) And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, "receive the Holy Spirit." [They are born again here.] (23) Whosoever sins you [aphiemi, apo (away) hiemi (send)] send away their sins are sent away [because God has already forgiven them], whosoever sins you retain/hold on to, they are retained. Now that they are born again they have the power to forgive as they have been forgiven and release the person who sins against them or retain the sin and not pass on the release that God has already given.
Last week we looked at the parable about a servant forgiven a great debt, then holding lesser debt against a fellow servant.
Matt 18:23 — The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. (24) When he had begun to settle them, one who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him. [A talent was worth 6,000 denarii; a denarius was a day’s wages] (25) But since he did not have the means to repay, his lord commanded him to be sold, along with his wife and children and all that he had, and repayment to be made. (26) So the servant fell to the ground and prostrated himself before him, saying, "Have patience with me and I will repay you everything." (27) And the lord of that servant felt compassion and released him and forgave him the debt. (28) But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, "Pay back what you owe." (29) So his fellow slave fell to the ground and began to plead with him, saying, "Have patience with me and I will repay you." (30) But he was unwilling and went and threw him in prison until he should pay back what was owed. This is a picture of us not forgiving a small debt to our neighbor, even though we have been forgiven a great debt.
(31) So when his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were deeply grieved and came and reported to their lord all that had happened. (32) Then summoning him, his lord said to him, "You wicked servant, I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. (33) Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow servant, in the same way that I had mercy on you?"
Any debt that could be owed to us is insignificant compared to the debt of which we have been forgiven. Col 3:13 — We can forgive/pardon others just as Christ has forgiven/pardoned us.
(34) And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over (surrendered him) to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him. If you want to live by judgment rather than mercy then that is what you will have.
(35) My heavenly Father will also do the same to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart. Old Covenant teaching.
Since God is no longer holding our sins against us he will not turn us over to the torturers, but if we withhold forgiveness from our neighbor we will turn ourselves over to the torturers.
Don’t hold on to sin that God has already released.
The main thrust of this parable is that when people wrong us, remember God’s great mercy that He has shown to us and respond the same to them.
Don’t hold on to someone’s sin when they sin against us; forgive them like Christ has forgiven us. Eph 4:31 — All bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be lifted from you, along with all malice. How? (32) Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
Eph 5:1 — Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; (2) and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you. We can be imitators of God and walk in love by not counting peoples sins against them, just as God doesn’t count our sins against us. As it says in 1 Cor 13.
1 Cor 13:4 — Agape love…(5)…does not take into account [logidzomai: take into account] a wrong suffered….
We can walk in love by not taking into account a wrong suffered against us, or against anyone.
2 Timothy 4:16 — [Paul said] At my first defense no one supported me, but all deserted me; may it not be [logidzomai] counted against them.
Rather than being offended Paul did not take into account a wrong suffered.
In Matthew 24:10-12 Jesus tells us that in the last days many will be offended [count someone’s sin against them and not forgive them] and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another…and because iniquity shall abound/increase [because of being offended] the love of many shall wax cold. If we get offended we contribute towards betrayal and hatred, and we cause sin to increase and love to wax cold.
If we are unoffendable we will curb betrayal and hatred and we will decrease sin and increase love.
Agape Love does not take into account a wrong suffered — it is unoffendable.