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Forgive That Jerk? – Forgiveness

ForgiveWhat does giving yourself as a living and holy sacrifice look like in real life?

How does God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think?

This section of Paul’s letter to the Romans spells out one major element of the complete answer to these questions: how you choose to react to being wronged.

Interact with God’s Word

Romans 12:17-21

  1. Paul uses the word “never” twice in this section (vv. 17 & 19).  What is he ruling out?
  2. If you do retaliate, what, according to verse 21, would Paul say has happened?
  3. How many end up being harmed when you indulge in payback?
  4. What do you risk by allowing God to be the final balancer of accounts?  Are you okay with this?
  5. Besides breaking a cycle of retaliation, what does the quoted proverb (v. 20) say may result?
  6. Instead of saying “forgive,” what specific actions does the proverb prescribe?
  7. How does doing kind acts change how you feel about someone who’s hurt you?
  8. Look up Proverbs 25:21.  What does the unquoted phrase add to your motivation?

Spend Time in Prayer:  Thank God for experiencing His undeserved favor. Ask Him to deliver you from bitterness and make you willing to pass His grace on to others.

Romans 12:17-21

17 Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do your part to live in peace with everyone, as much as possible. 19 Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God. For it is written, “I will take vengeance; I will repay those who deserve it.”

20 Instead, do what the Scriptures say: “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink, and they will be ashamed of what they have done to you.” 21 Don’t let evil get the best of you, but conquer evil by doing good.

Prayer for the Week: When I’ve been wronged, Lord, I’m naturally bent on retaliation. But You’ve said to leave that to You. Help me to submit my case to You.

 

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