2 Corinthians 2:7
“So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.”
Forgiveness is one of the hardest things for a believer to do, but one of the most rewarding acts you can perform. Forgiveness is the one act that gives the clearest picture of Christ to the lost world more than any other act. Nobody ever said that forgiving would be easy, but it is the right thing to do. In this chapter, there are nine values of forgiveness.
First, forgiveness is the act of the offended. You will notice in the verse above that you must forgive the other. Forgiveness is not waiting for the offender to say, “I’m sorry,” but forgiveness will forgive the offender even if they are never sorry for what they have done.
Second, forgiveness helps the offender to overcome their guilt. You will notice that when a person forgives, it keeps the offender from being “swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.” You can help people live a life of victory if you will be willing to forgive them. Forgiving the offender helps to rid them of their guilt so they can move on, and maybe one day come to you to tell you they are sorry for what they have done.
Third, forgiveness reveals your love for others. Verse 8 shows that forgiveness confirms your love to others. The best way for you to show others that you love them is to forgive them when they do wrong.
Fourth, forgiveness motivates others to forgive. Verse 10 shows that two people are forgiving each other. You will find that when you start forgiving others that forgiveness will become something that inspires others to forgive.
Fifth, forgiveness gives the believer an advantage over Satan. Verse 11 shows that unforgiveness gives Satan “an advantage of us”; therefore, it allows Satan to gain a better position over the believer to destroy them. You will never gain an advantage over Satan in any area of your life until you learn to be forgiving.
Sixth, forgiveness opens the door for opportunities. Paul’s forgiveness gave him open doors in verse 12. You will find that doors will begin to open up in your life once you learn to start forgiving others. If you want God to open doors in your life or ministry, you would be wise to make sure that you have forgiven anyone to whom you hold a grudge against.
Seventh, forgiveness gives you personal victory. Verse 14 shows that forgiveness allows the believer to “triumph in Christ.” You will live a life of defeat if you don’t learn to forgive. You will discover the chains of guilt will drop and a freedom you have never had once you forgive others.
Eighth, forgiveness puts you in favor with God. Verse 15 shows that forgiveness makes you a “sweet savour” unto Christ. If you want God’s favor on your life, you will learn to be forgiving.
Ninth, forgiveness shows your trust and respect for God’s Word. Verse 17 reveals that unforgiveness corrupts the Word of God. If you trust God’s Word, you will be forgiving of those who have wronged you.
Let me ask you; who is it that you have not forgiven. You will miss out on forgiveness’ values until you learn to forgive.