Understanding Forgiveness – Part 1


1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

APHIEMI is the Greek word for forgiveness. It means to: remit debts, to completely cancel debts owed, deliverance of sinner from the penalty of sin committed, complete removal of the cause of offence, to let go of trespasses. Divine forgiveness is in two folds; firstly, it signifies the remission of punishment due to sinful conduct, the deliverance of sinners from penalty divinely: secondly, it involves the complete removal of the cause of offence. So, forgiveness deals with both the cause and conduct. It deals with both the fruit and the root.

Forgiveness is one of the greatest words in any language and it remains one of the most emotively powerful word in the Kingdom of God. It is positioned at the very heart of God’s message to us. Christianity is founded on the forgiveness of the sin of mankind. The Jesus came to save humanity from their sins. Sin stems from the fall of Adam and through his fall, we all became sinners. So, by nature, the human race is sinful. As a result of the fallen nature, our conduct and character are shaped by sin.

Everyone has been offended and everyone has offended before. You have been in need of forgiveness and others have needed your forgiveness as well. Jesus said that offence must come. Life is a contact sport, so from time to time, we will trespass against one another either in words or in deeds.

From whom do you need to receive forgiveness?

Whosoever  we have offended. If you have offended God then you need forgiveness from Him. If you have offended your fellow man then you need forgiveness from such a person. If you offended yourself and did something you are not proud of then you need forgive yourself and desist from self condemnation. A note of caution, you should be sincere and willing to repent and change your ways when asking for forgiveness. Some say sorry and apologise just for the sake of it and not with genuine motive or intention. They are only going through the motions. Although they apologised, their heart is still set to continue doing as they intended. Remember, God looks at the heart. So your words and your heart must match for true forgiveness to occur.

For further Study

Matthew 18:21-35

Personal declaration for the day

I will admit when I am wrong and seek forgiveness with a heart of repentance.

Questions for you to reflect on

How do you response when you discover you are wrong?