Forgiveness (warning: the story is graphic)

I am moved, sickened, overwhelmed by this incredible story. Susanne (wife of one of the victims) experienced maybe the worst thing possible in this life: the torture and murder of a loved one. Her pain must be horrible. The thing is, Jesus gives us something to live and die for that makes it all worth the trouble. The pain of this life will end. Heaven is worth it.

A Christian doesn’t need to avenge wrongs; he or she can forgive the wrong because of Jesus’ death and resurrection. The torture and murder is horrible. But that is how all sin looks to God. Our petty lies, lusts, jealousies, and on and on all look that horrible to God. It cost him the torture and murder of his son.

 Somehow, after reading about the gracious forgiveness of Susanne to those who hurt her so badly, I feel moved to forgive those who have wronged me. Yes, the sin is terrible. But Jesus’ redemption is more powerful than the sin.  

While under house arrest, Paul wrote to the Philippians that he would prefer to die and be with Christ. The reality is, his death was institutionalized murder. He was to be executed for his beliefs. He was happy to live and endure the wrongs of others for the sake of his brothers and sisters in Christ. But his preference was to leave it all and go home. Philippians is full of joy and unity and servanthood and Christ’s humility and exaltation. Paul was near death. He was so moved by knowing Jesus that the worst wrongs and pain in this life didn’t rattle him.

Do I know Jesus like this?


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