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No Fishing

Monday, March 31, 2008 7 comments

Forgiveness seems to be a recent common topic among the blogs I visit, so I decided to contribute. As Christians we believe we should forgive like Christ forgave us. We all know this can be difficult, yet it may be more difficult to completely forgive and not bring it up again.

Micah 7:19

"He will again have compassion on us, And will subdue our iniquities. You will cast all our sins Into the depths of the sea."

As my Pastor frequently says after referencing this verse "God then put up a no fishing sign.". True forgiveness doesn't allow digging up old dirt. I think the Bible reemphasizes this when it describes love in 1 Corinthians chapter 13.

There are some questions that come to mind: Should we not use a person's past for evaluation (i.e. politician or any leadership position)? Do away with the sex offenders list? Is there an exception with punishment? Is there a difference between forgiving and using the past for evaluating someone's character or is it just stereotyping?

7 comments: to “ No Fishing so far...

  • McQ April 1, 2008 at 2:46 PM

    There is a difference between forgiveness on a personal level and punishment. We forgive people who hurt us. "Forgetting" isn't simply wiping the event from your mind. It's more along the lines of not bringing up old sins. Once you forgive somebody, you shouldn't be giving them a hard time afterwards.

    Then there is the law. When somebody commits a crime, they are guilty and deserving of punishment. The person who commits the crime may be forgiven by the victim, but they've still broken the law. And the government can't just "forgive and forget" when it comes to criminals.

  • Roland April 1, 2008 at 9:38 PM

    Forgiving is tough.
    And I try not to 'drag things up'.
    But sometimes a little light needs to be shed on some things to help us understand both side of an issue better.
    Only seeing one side is rather lopsided. ;)

    As for forgetting, God says He will when we ask for forgiveness.
    I think of a nice thick Brooklyn accent saying, "Fuhget about it."
    But that's just my take.

  • Doorman-Priest April 3, 2008 at 3:18 AM

    That's a hard last question. God fordives but doesn't presumably forget. We should forgive and often fail to do more than go through the motions. On balance I think a person's past might be a touchstone for evaluation their capacity for making sound judgements.

    The gutter press, on the other hand, is vitriolic and nasty. What passes for informed debate becomes wicked in destroying reputations.

  • MikeT April 3, 2008 at 9:18 AM

    The government can't forgive and forget, but it is obligated to stop punishing someone once they have served their sentence. Our society has become so limp-wristed that it cannot punish someone right the first time, so instead it punishes them with a light prison sentence then makes a social leper out of them. Once you are out of prison and off of parole, that should always be the end of your loss of any liberty.

    IMO, a society that does things like sex offender lists and ankle bracelets for serious offenders likely to repeat their crime deserves the next round of victimization it gets. Do it right the first time, or don't complain when it happens the second time.

  • layneh April 3, 2008 at 9:36 AM

    First and foremost, its your pastor adding this point. Then I would like to point out that the "He" would be God.

    That is NOT to say that we should bring up sins we have forgiven someone of, however to remember how we have been sinned against by a person is not wrong.

    This reminds me of that whole Judging topic we ran into long ago. I dont think that we should judge someone by their sin, but I think we can evaluate situations from it.

    The Bible says dont stand in front of the a door that you know sin is behind. So you dont ask a committed sex offender to babysit. You are then responsible for putting that temptation in his life.

  • Craig April 3, 2008 at 10:21 AM


    I think your comment is a little extreme. Making an illustration of a Bible verse is not comparable to God. That is like me saying your god by when you said the trinity is like the brain. It is only an illustration to better understand.

    The rest who commented,

    I think we all agree about government, but what about leadership of the church. What if someone has done something in the past. Should they have a leadership position? Or what about a lost of trust in a friend, are you in a sense bringing something up again by not trusting again?

  • Doorman-Priest April 4, 2008 at 5:58 AM

    Craig: it may depend whether or not they were in leadership before and, of course, the nature of their mistake.

    We didn't relly discuss the idea of reform and to me that is part of the whole sin, repent and be forgiven formula. There probably needs to be some time lapse, but if a person shows true repentance and also shows that they have reformed by their life, why not show that forgiveness can lead to leadership?

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