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Friday, May 10, 2013

Amazing Forgiveness

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Amazing Forgiveness! -  Michael J. S. Austin, Ph.D.


Many high ranking people and celebrities learn how to cope with their detractors - some, it must be said, more successfully than others. So how should they react? Well, that's for them to decide isn't it? Should they aim to protect their position and perhaps a carefully groomed identity, for all they're worth? Should they express their loss of popularity in moody outbursts, or as if they had not a care in the world?
• HIGHEST HONOUR. In a wider context, a person's name is so closely linked to their identity that slander and defamation spoil or damage one's good name or reputation. At the present time, while much of the world is going through huge social and political upheavals, respect for all lawful civil authority is to be encouraged as this reflects the God-ordained means to restrain widespread disorder, lawlessness and anarchy. Yes, we should give respect to whomever it is due! And even in a fallen world this still applies supremely to God himself, for he holds universal authority over all things and highest honour and everlasting praise is his due!
• REMEMBER. His command is clear; 'You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain' (Deut. 5:11). As we would expect, God has every right to honour and worshipful obedience in a way that glorifies him - supremely it is his due and his alone! When we come to the words of Jesus, we find him reinforcing this by saying 'that all may honour the Son, just as they honour the Father. Whoever does not honour the Son does not honour the Father who sent him' (John 5:23).
• ASTONISHING! But now, here is something you may not have expected! What sort of treatment will those who dishonour him receive; will they be judged and condemned for supreme disloyalty? Listen carefully to these gracious and generous words: 'And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven' (Luke 12:10). 'Will be forgiven'! How astonishing! What grace - what an open window to the heart of God! Jesus' self-description here as 'Son of Man' speaks of more than his humanity, it is a breathtaking title of cosmic and universal rank, of one who would ascend to God and receive supreme authority and 'everlasting dominion' (see Daniel 7:13f).
• SUPREME. For Jesus is also the eternal Son, who displays the fullness of the radiant glory of God's majesty; the Lord Jesus Christ, Creator of all things - before whom earth and sky will flee away, and before whom all shall stand on that great day! (see Rev. 20:11, 21:6,). He alone, as God's vice-regent, has supreme authority to judge (see John 5:22, Acts 17:30-31). He is also 'full of grace and truth' (John 1:14). So when Jesus says that everyone who speaks a word against him will be forgiven, is this a general amnesty - a universal forgiveness? We must say, 'no' - his forgiveness is always qualified by the ONE means of forgiveness.
• GENEROUS LOVE. One of the wonderful truths of the gospel is that he knows how prone we children of the Fall are, either to speak, or infer, so often by the way we live, foolish, malicious and insulting things against HIM, whose Name is exalted in glorious majesty! And in these words Jesus reassures us that we all - 'everyone' may be forgiven! How much do you think you need forgiveness? Do you think your sin has seriously offended God's eternal majesty? We have all sinned in countless ways and must repent and confess to God, with the assurance that Christ, God's eternal Son (not by human birth), has already dealt with sin's penalty by suffering fully and finally on the cross, when he died. Now is the time to confess and receive forgiveness - today!
• INFLATED. How different is his attitude from that of lesser persons! Speak a word against some of them, and their inflated pride, or that of their followers, is so easily injured their fury knows no bounds - they will never forgive you! You don't hear much in the way of pardon from such fierce and intolerant fury, do you?
• SERIOUS CAUTION. Having said this much, we must be very careful to note that Jesus followed his assurance of gracious forgiveness with a serious warning, 'but one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven' (Luke 12:10). Why will one offended Person of the Godhead forgive but another not forgive? Briefly, it is the gracious Holy Spirit of God who convicts us and rebukes our consciences of sin against God. But if we in supreme folly attribute his true and gracious working and his fullness in Christ's life and miracles and in the inspiration of Scripture (Old and New Testament) all to the working of Satan, such terrible blindness has no awareness of its sinful folly - and does not seek forgiveness - so will not be forgiven.
Make sure you don't commit this supreme folly, but rather ask the Holy Spirit to enlighten your mind and conscience to the gravity and wickedness of sin in the sight of God, and how much it cost the Lord of glory to endure sin's penalty by shedding his own precious blood. Ask for a willingness and ability to repent and trust in Christ and him alone - then you too may know his great mercy and amazing forgiveness!
Michael J. S. Austin, PhD. Michael J. S. Austin's books and articles offer serious discussions and answers for life's big questions - 'How do I know which is true - Theism or Atheism?'  'Is biblical Christianity finished, or does it still speak to the 21st century?' My title, 'DAWKINS' DILEMMAS' answers, 'will Richard Dawkins' atheism grip millions, fade or stir lingering doubts?' and shows how Dawkins' atheism works hard to shut its eyes to the glory of God revealed in creation, conscience & supremely in Jesus Christ the Son of God. Find out how biblical Christianity uncovers Dawkins' dilemmas and why atheism lacks rational foundations. http://www.amazon.com/Dawkins-Dilemmas-Michael-Austin/dp/1604776668/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1302182528&sr=1-2 My second title, 'LOST RELATION - finding humanity and God' is a serious discussion on how the evolutionary beliefs of Charles Darwin undermine the validity of human reason to the point where, if Darwin was right, you would never know! He admits this when he says his own thinking has only come from monkeys - find out about Darwin's greatest discovery! Check my books on Amazon - & BUY TODAY! Personal email for book enquiries: mdaustin@iolfree.ie Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Michael_J._S._Austin,_Ph.D.  Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6914207

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