The Way DAY 48 - Forgive Like Jesus

DAY 48 - Forgive Like Jesus

Luke 23:26-34

What does it look like to take up your cross and follow Jesus?

Yesterday we talked about daily denial. As we follow Jesus through Holy Week to the cross, we also see that following Jesus also looks like forgiveness. In Luke 23, Jesus has already been betrayed, arrested, condemned, and nailed to the cross. In Luke 23:34, Jesus prays for his persecutors, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Jesus looked into the faces of those who hated him and chose forgiveness - even as they continued to mistreat him!

Forgiveness is an essential part of the Way of Jesus. It’s there in the Lord’s Prayer. Of course, Jesus saw his ministry in life and death as providing forgiveness, or release, from sin. In Jesus Christ, we receive God’s forgiveness for our sins.

We’re also empowered to forgive others. Forgiveness is a choice, not a feeling. It’s a choice to let go, to release someone from revenge. It’s a refusal to feed bitterness over how someone has mistreated us or someone we care about. It’s praying God’s best into their lives. C.S. Lewis said, “To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you.” It feels impossible to do, but he carried you so you can follow him.

How does Jesus forgiving his persecutors from the cross affect how you forgive people? 

Lord, your prayer to “forgive them” covers me, just as much as it covered those at your cross. Thank you for your forgiveness. Help me to forgive others like you forgive me. Amen.

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