I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.
Holding onto a grudge does not protect your rights. It denies your right to forgive and live a happy life.
This morning I was reading this passage in the Bible, “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil.” Ephesians 4:26-27. Suddenly, a random thought hit me. When we hang onto a grudge and refuse to forgive, we are giving the devil his “right” to have a place in our hearts. It is God’s place to tell us to forgive. It is the devil’s right to tell us we don’t have to forgive. When Christ resurrected Moses, the devil was right there to say Moses could not be forgiven and resurrected. When Christ forgave the paralytic, the devil was right amongst the priests and Pharisees claiming Christ had no right to forgive. 1 John 2:1 tells us Jesus is our advocate. Jesus gives us the right to be forgiven and to forgive. However when we hang onto a grudge, and refuse to forgive, then we have just fired Jesus as our advocate and put the devil, the accuser of the brethren in His place! Not a good move.
Do you really want the accuser of the brethren telling you what your rights are? Consider our high Priest as He hung upon the cross and forgave the repentant thief; “Men may exercise power over His human body. They may pierce the holy temples with the crown of thorns. They may strip from Him His raiment, and quarrel over its division. But they cannot rob Him of His power to forgive sins. In dying He bears testimony to His own divinity and to the glory of the Father. His ear is not heavy that it cannot hear, neither His arm shortened that it cannot save. It is His royal right to save unto the uttermost all who come unto God by Him.” – Desire of Ages, p. 751. It is God’s right to forgive sin and He has also given that right to you! Don’t let the devil take away your rights!
When the devil tells you that the person who has hurt you has taken away your right to happiness, turn the tables on him! Tell him you have the right to forgive them and be happy, instead of taking his poison by holding onto the grudge that he wants to give you, as your supposed “right”. Instead of letting the devil give you his fruit, let God give you the fruit of the Spirit which is love. “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:31-32. Holding onto a grudge is not a right, its a poison. Forgiveness is a divine right! Satan has no place or right in your relationships!
You may find more studies and devotionals on my website In Light Of The Cross.
Thanks a lot William for posting this blog, it was a tremendous help to me today.
Praise God, Richard! Thanks for your note and encouragement.
With this new year it bring new thoughts of love, peace and prosperity. Leave all the negative mental attitutes in 2009.
I would like to do some more reading on forgivness. You know some hurts go really deep and it’s hard to know how to forgive, so I need to keep reading until God turns a light bulb on for me.
I know what you mean Diana. The light came on for me when I realized forgiving made me stronger, not weaker. I realized as long as I kept harboring the hurt I was actually saving a place for Satan in my heart. By forgiving I kicked Satan and his pain out of my life and moved on.