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Forgiveness comes first

September 27th, 2011 by isaac · No Comments

Here’s the beginning of my sermon from September 11th:

How many times do I have to forgive? It’s a good question. After someone has wronged you again and again, at some point, don’t you have to be done with him or her? At some point, aren’t you justified in rejecting them, in giving up on them, for the sake of your own health, for the sake of your security, for the sake of your ability to go on with your life?

“Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?”

Jesus responds with a story, a parable, about the kingdom of heaven, a story about what God’s reign is like, about what God is like. I think the story exposes something hidden within Peter’s question. His first inclination is to think about how he has been wronged, to worry about who has sinned against him, to consider who he needs to forgive and how many times. His first inclination is to think of himself as a victim—the one who needs to forgive, not the one who needs to be forgiven: If my sister or brother sins against me, how much should I forgive?

 


For the rest, look here: Chapel Hill Mennonite, Sept 11 sermon.

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Tags: sermons · war