Forgiven People Forgive People

I’m reading Unleash! by Perry Noble. Chapter 5, “Moving On”, is all about forgiveness. I’m struck again by the central part forgiveness plays to both the grand redemptive story and to my small little life. That God forgives and fully restores all who are in Jesus, well that’s it. That’s the meta-narative of existence. Glory to that God! No other compares.

On a much smaller, but still consequential level, my forgiveness of others has profound ramifications. When I forgive, I am being like my Father in Heaven. I am also experiencing a freedom from bitterness, anger, vengence and self-pity (its no fun spending time in these prisons). When I forgive I am able to love others fully.

Perry Noble speaks of forgiveness needing to be “complete” and “continuous”. Both of these words point to major challenges. I can’t hold back forgiveness from anyone over anything (complete). And I must forgive over and over again as I will be sinned against over and over again (continuous).

Oh the sheer thought of this power. The grace to set others free from my wrath and anger. The grace to be free from my bitterness and vengence.

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If I’m good, do I get a cookie?

So what motivates us to behave? Cookies? other rewards?
Recently I read this statement, “We who are in Christ are children of God not because we are good but because God is good.” ~ @perrynoble, unleash
The Gospel is great news because I am relieved of the pressure to think I have to earn Heaven by being good. But what then motivates us to do good?
Here is a short list from the Bible:
1. love for God motivates us. Since doing the right pleases him, and I love him, i pursue righteousness. Ephesians 5:1-2
2. One of the evidences that the Holy Spirit has given me new life is goodness (Galatians 5:22)
3. We were made for good works (Ephesians 2:10)
4. God chooses to do his good works through our good works (Philippians 2:13)
5. Good deeds are commandeds (1 Timothy 2:10; 5:10; 6:18, Titus 3:14)
6. Good works brings people to Jesus (1 Peter 2:12)
7. Our good deeds help others imitate God (3 John 1:12)

That’s enough to pursuade me to do good. A cookie helps too ;O)