Kenneth E. Hagin
What is the God-kind of love like? The God-kind of love is full of kindness and is tenderhearted. Since God’s love is kind and tenderhearted, it is always ready to forgive.
Ephesians 4:32 says, “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” Sometimes people interpret this verse by saying that we are to forgive people only when they are kind to us. But that’s not what the Bible says.
This scripture also doesn’t say, “Forgive one another when the offense doesn’t amount to much. But if people have done a lot against you, then it’s okay to not forgive them.”
Many Christians allow their flesh to rule them, and then wonder why they aren’t receiving God’s best in their lives. But it’s impossible to walk in the God-kind of love while allowing the flesh to rule.
If we’re going to obey the Bible, we have to let the inward man rule us so we can be “kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another.” It’s only as we “put on” Christ and make no provision for the flesh (Rom. 13:14) that we will be able to forgive one another, even as God for Christ’s sake forgave us.
How can we forgive the way God forgives? Well, the Bible says that God is love. And the same kind of love that God is has been shed abroad in our heart by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 5:5).
This is not natural, human love; it is divine love. It is the God-kind of love. And one characteristic of the God-kind of love is that it forgives.
When God forgives, He forgets!
Isaiah 43:25 says, “I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.” Hebrews 8:12 says, “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.”
These scriptures tell us that when we ask for forgiveness, God doesn’t remember our sins anymore. God doesn’t say, “I’m going to hold against you everything you’ve ever done, and I’m going to remind you of your sins every time I think of them.”
Sometimes husbands and wives can be prone to remind each other of past mistakes every time a disagreement arises. There’s no way they can develop a good relationship if they keep doing that. Also, if spouses constantly remind each other of past mistakes and failures, it will ruin their prayer lives and will make their faith inoperative.
1 PETER 3:7
7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
If husbands and wives hold unforgiveness against each other, it can affect their health, and their prayers will be hindered. When you love someone, you will not keep reminding them of their past mistakes, sins, and failures. You will not keep reminding them about the way they hurt you, let you down, or offended you.
Now the devil may bring a picture to your mind of something that happened between you and another person. But you don’t have to entertain the devil’s thoughts. You can go on your way and walk in forgiveness, knowing that the Lord has forgiven you of your sin, failures, and shortcomings, and that you have forgiven the other person.
Some people say, “Well, I just can’t forgive.” But that doesn’t line up with the Scriptures, because if you are born again, the God-kind of love has been shed abroad in your heart.
Other people say, “Well, I can’t forgive the way God does because I’m not God.” Of course, you’re not God! But, you see, God forgives because He is love (1 John 4:8). And the same kind of love that God is dwells in you. Therefore, you can forgive with His love, just as God does.
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