2 Corinthians 2:5-11 – Now if anyone has caused pain, he has caused it not to me, but in some measure—not to put it too severely—to all of you. For such a one, this punishment by the majority is enough, so you should rather turn to forgive and comfort him, or he may be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. So I beg you to reaffirm your love for him. For this is why I wrote, that I might test you and know whether you are obedient in everything. Anyone whom you forgive, I also forgive. Indeed, what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, has been for your sake in the presence of Christ, so that we would not be outwitted by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his designs.
Acts 7:59-60 – And as they were stoning Stephen, he called out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” And falling to his knees he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
When you choose not to forgive, you are choosing to welcome the demonic into your life.
The Bible often speaks of unforgiveness and the demonic together. Many of those sections are written by Paul, who previously worked for the devil, persecuting Christians and murdering the early church leader Stephen. While dying, Stephen echoed Jesus and prayed for his murderers, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.”
Stephen’s prayer was answered. Paul was saved, forgiven of his debt to God by Jesus Christ, and he stopped serving Satan and started serving his Savior by preaching forgiveness.
Who has caused you pain? The Holy Spirit through Paul teaches that when we are hurt, Satan seeks access to us, our family, and our church family.
Is there anyone you have not fully forgiven from the heart? How has the demonic used your hurt to cause you more hurt?
Consider for a moment what the complete record of all your sins would be. Don’t overlook any thought you have had, deed you have done, word you have said, or motive you have hidden. Also recount your sins of omission, where you have failed to do right. How many pages long would all of the debts from your life be?
Now, believe by faith that when the soldiers drove the nails into Jesus’ hands and feet, they were in the spirit realm also nailing the record of your sinful debts to the cross. How did Jesus defeat and disarm the demonic? By paying the price of death for your debt to God to be forgiven.
To defeat and disarm the demonic, you must forgive as you have been forgiven.
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