I Can’t Forgive Myself– Lies of the Enemy #5– Purity 1017
Purity 1017 04/14/2023 Purity 1017 Podcast
Purity 1017 on YouTube: Coming Soon!
Today’s photo a springtime scene of a field of flowers under blue skies comes to us from Megan Seguin who shared this scene on social media a couple of days ago during her family vacation’s road trip stop at Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia.
Well, it’s Friday and I know this is the second time we are sharing from Megan’s vacation this week, but I thought this was a good visual encouragement to “stop and smell the roses” as we head into the weekend. I know these are tulips, I think, but that also goes to show that we make the best of what we got and don’t need everything to be perfect to experience peace and joy.
When you walk in the Spirit, our peace and joy is not dependent on positive circumstances and the fruit of the Spirit can grow in our lives even in dark times when we are walking with the Lord and resting in His presence.
But walking in the Spirit is an intentional choice that we need to make every day. Ever wonder why some Christians are grouchy, depressed, angry, fearful, or joyless? It’s because they have either forgotten what the Lord has done for them, don’t know who they are in Christ, or have deviated from the Lord’s path for them in their behavior or their thoughts.
And some times that deviation that leads to sadness, depression, anxiety, or anger is a combination of pride and the subtle influences of the spiritual forces of darkness, who scripture attests can oppress even Christians with the “fiery darts of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:16).
That’s why we have to walk in the Spirit and put on the “whole armor of God” (Ephesians 6:13) which includes “girding our waists with truth” and denying the lies of the enemy.
And so today we continue our current series which is an examination of some of the common lies the enemy tells us to cause us to doubt our faith or to choose not to follow the Lord with the way we live our lives.
So today’s big lie is:
Lie # 5: I Can’t Forgive Myself.
For those who tuned in yesterday, you may think we already covered this with “I can’t be forgiven.” However, there is a subtle distinction between these two lies that is directly addressed in the Steps to Freedom in Christ and just happened to be discussed in last night’s meeting of Deeper Walk International’s School of Pray Ministry cohort that I am currently being trained in. This section’s course of study is spiritual warfare and part of last night’s discussion addressed the stronghold of unforgiveness and how the enemy could use it as legal permission to torment Christians.
The Lord commands us to forgive, right in and after the Lord’s prayer in Matthew 6: Where Jesus said:
Matthew 6:12 (NLT2)
12 …and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.
Matthew 6:14-15 (NLT2)
14 “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you.
15 But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Here, the Lord’s prayer indicates that our forgiveness is a forgone conclusion for the Christian and His instruction after it indicates that our failure to forgive could possibly separate us from the Lord. If you don’t forgive others, you may be a false convert!
Or you may be prideful, the sin of Satan, and afflicted by demons! In Jesus’ parable of the ungrateful servant, when the master discovers how the ungrateful servant has had his fellow servant thrown into prison over a small debt, when he was forgiven of a much larger debt, the master makes him pay for it! Jesus tells us in:
Matthew 18:34-35 (NKJV)
34 And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him.
35 So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses."
Some have taught that “the torturers” could represent demonic oppression that comes from the foothold of unforgiveness.
So what does that got to do with “I can’t forgive myself”? Possibly a great deal!
When we say, we can’t forgive ourselves, we are subtly saying that we are greater than God. We (and/or the spiritual forces of darkness) are torturing ourselves by denying the forgiveness that God has given to us when we put our faith in Jesus Christ.
We are begrudgingly agreeing with our “positional forgiveness” ( I “know” God forgives me….) but we are denying the benefits and effects of God’s forgiveness to work in our lives through pride or by believing the lie that “we can’t forgive” ourselves.
Somehow our pain, guilt, or shame trumps the power of God in our lives! In reality, it doesn’t – it can’t – we are forgiven of everything when we put our faith in Jesus – but in practice we are allowing our pride, ignorance, or believing the enemy’s condemning lies to keep us from accepting God’s forgiveness fully to experience the joy and peace of the forgiveness we have in Christ.
Step 3 of the Steps to Freedom in Christ – Bitterness vs. Forgiveness, addresses this by directing us to forgive “myself”. The teaching in that step states:
“Often we hold things against ourselves as well, punishing ourselves for wrong choices we’ve made in the past. Write “myself” at the bottom of your list if you need to forgive yourself. Forgiving yourself is accepting the truth that God has already forgiven you in Christ. If God forgives you, you can forgive yourself!”
So don’t believe the lie that “I can’t forgive myself”!
If you need to break the bondage, pray the following prayer:
Dear Heavenly Father, I choose to forgive MYSELF for [what you did or failed to do], because it made me feel [share the painful feelings, for example, rejected, dirty, worthless, or inferior].
Lord Jesus, I choose not to hold on to my resentment against myself. I relinquish my right to condemn myself and ask you to heal my damaged emotions. Thank You for setting me free from the bondage of my bitterness. I now ask You to bless me with the peace of your forgiveness. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
(modified Step 3 prayer to address forgiving “myself”)
Okay so if you believed that lie that “I can’t forgive myself” and prayed that prayer, you are agreeing with what the Lord has already done in your life and to continue to experience the peace and joy of your forgiveness in Christ, you simply have to remember the truth of what the Lord done has for you.
Truth overcomes the lies of the enemy. But we have to choose to believe the truth, and keep on believing the truth, and to live according to the Lord’s wisdom to make the truth a manifest reality in our lives. When we walk in the Spirit we stand in the truth, we overcome the lies of the enemy, and experience the abundant life that God wants us to live.
For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple apologetic will provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .
Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.
This morning’s meditation verse is:
2 Peter 3:8
8 But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day.
Today’s verse points to God’s timeless nature and indicates that we should cultivate the fruit of patience as we grow as Christians.
I am sharing a link to an article I found on this passage of scripture from the Christian Truth Center (https://www.christiantruthcenter.com/one-day-is-with-the-lord-as-a-thousand-years-and-a-thousand-years-as-one-day/#:~:text=One%20day%20is%20with%20the%20Lord%20as%20a,fastness%20but%20He%20comes%20at%20His%20right%20time.) Now I am brand new to this site so I would be discerning in determining what they teach, as we should always be, but I was impressed with the following quote in the article enough to share it. Heck they claim to be “Non-denominational, Non-religious, and Non-money making, Focusing only on Jesus Christ” so I don’t mind pointing in their direction, with the disclaimer that this is not an endorsement as they are brand new to me due to a google search!
Anyway the wisdom they share about this verse is that:
“God is neither slow nor fast in accordance to humanity. This verse reveals that God is not slow in keeping His promise as humanity understands slowness neither is He fast as humanity understands fastness but He comes at His right time.”
Context bears this out as
2 Peter 3:9
9 The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.
So as the context reveals, Jesus hasn’t returned because God wants people to come to repentance. When Christ comes back, He will come to rule and reign and Revelation indicates that will be a bloody affair.
So we should be content to wait on the Lord in the end times, and in our individual lives. If we believe that God is sovereign and is working all things together for good we should endeavor to patiently endure through the trials of our lives knowing that God is in control.
So trust in the Lord for today, and tomorrow, and know that He can be trusted for the next 1,000 years as well.
As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.
Today we continue sharing from A.W. Pink’s “The Sovereignty of God.”
As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work. This resource is available on many websites for less than $20.00.
THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD
By ARTHUR W. PINK
Let us take up these questions in the order of mention.
1. God’s Sovereignty and the believer’s growth in grace
If God has foreordained everything that comes to pass, of what avail is it for us to “exercise” ourselves “unto godliness” (1 Tim. 4:7)? If God has before ordained the good works in which we are to walk (Eph. 2:10) then why should we be “careful to maintain good works” (Titus 3:8)? This only raises once more the problem of human responsibility. Really, it should be enough for us to reply, God has bidden us do so. Nowhere does Scripture inculcate or encourage a spirit of fatalistic indifference. Contentment with our present attainments is expressly disallowed. The word to every believer is “Press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:14). This was the apostle’s aim, and it should be ours. Instead of hindering the development of Christian character, a proper apprehension and appreciation of God’s sovereignty will forward it. Just as the sinner’s despair of any help from himself is the first prerequisite of a sound conversion, so the loss of all confidence in himself is the first essential in the believer’s growth in grace; and just as the sinner despairing of help from himself will cast him into the arms of sovereign mercy so the Christian, conscious of his own frailty, will turn unto the Lord for power. It is when we are weak we are strong (2 Cor. 12:10): that it to say, there must be consciousness of our weakness before we shall turn to the Lord for help. While the Christian allows the thought that he is sufficient in himself, while he imagines that by mere force of will he shall resist temptation, while he has any confidence in the flesh then, like Peter who boasted that though all forsook the Lord yet should not he, so we shall certainly fail and fall. Apart from Christ we can do nothing (John 15:5). The promise of God is “He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might (of their own) He increaseth strength” (Isa. 40:29).
The question now before us is of great practical importance, and we are deeply anxious to express ourselves clearly and simply. The secret of development of Christian character is the realization of our own powerlessness, acknowledged powerlessness, and the consequent turning unto the Lord for help. The plain fact is that of ourselves we cannot do this, or make ourselves do it. “In nothing be anxious”—but who can avoid and prevent anxiety when things go wrong? “Awake to righteousness and sin not”—but who can help sinning? These are merely examples selected at random from scores of others. Does then God mock us by biding us do what He knows we are unable to do? The answer of Augustine to this question is the best we have met with—“God gives commands we cannot perform, that we may know what we ought to request from Him.” A consciousness of our powerlessness should cast us upon Him who has all power. Here then is where a vision and view of God’s sovereignty helps, for it reveals His sufficiency and shows us our insufficiency.
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Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship
 Arthur W. Pink, The Sovereignty of God (Swengel, PA: Bible Truth Depot, 1949), 245–247.