Genesis #42 – How Can You Find Freedom by Forgiving?

In this, the closing two scenes of the life of Joseph we witness one of the most God-glorifying, heartwarming, and example setting occasions of forgiving in all of the Bible. Joseph had forgiven his evil brothers many years before being reunited with them. Living by the power of the Holy Spirit, he was emotionally healed up and lived a godly and fruitful life as a blessing to others. After their father died, the brothers feared that Joseph was secretly unforgiving of them and plotting vengeance to destroy them. Upon seeing that they had not accepted full forgiveness from he and God, Joseph wept as he loved them and wanted good for them. This is the heart of forgiveness that we examine in great detail in this final sermon in the Joseph series.

Trusting God in Troubled Times 

Sermon #42 –  How Can You Find Freedom by Forgiving?

Genesis 50

The goal is to unburden. 

The opposite of forgiveness is vengeance (Romans 12:19). Don’t seek vengeance, trust God. 

When we diminish sin, we diminish our Savior and our salvation.

Christianity is confessing sin and receiving forgiveness. We need God to change us and bring us back into right relationship. 

The number one command in the BIble is “do not fear”. The command is given 150 times. 

It’s not what happens to you, it’s how you interpret it.

Faith is trusting God’s plan until you see the plan of God. 

God is so good that he even uses evil for good.

Forgiveness is…

  • both a one time event and an ongoing process.
  • often not between you and another person but between you and God. 
  • canceling someone’s debt so they don’t have to repay you. 
  • the opposite of denial
  • not trust. Forgiveness is free but trust is earned. 


All of your sin is a debt to God. Jesus came to pay the debt for sin. This is forgiveness.

Bitterness is like cancer for the soul. It affects everything and brings death. 

Don’t trust people you don’t know. Love everyone but don’t trust everyone.  


7 kinds of unforgiving people:

  • Archeologist, the one who is always digging the past up 
  • The Stalker, the person who is so hurt they fix their eyes on the person who caused their pain instead of God
  • The Tragic Tale Teller, the person who wants sympathy and new partners in their evil
  • The Record of Wrong Keeper, the one who keeps a record of every wrong and amasses debt
  • The Negative Anniversary Funeral Planner
  • The Emotional Leaker
  • The Wounded Digital Warrior, the one who sees themselves as the righteous victim who hurts others. 


7 reasons to forgive:

  • Forgiving glorifies God (1 Cor. 10:31)
  • Forgiveness blesses you
  • Forgiveness blesses others (Hebrews 12:15)
  • Forgiveness defeats the demonic (Eph. 4)
  • Forgiveness is grace to your offender
  • Forgiveness is a witness to others
  • Forgiveness opens you to the flow of the Holy Spirit


Your test is your testimony. Never forget that others are watching.

Walk in freedom, not torment.

For the Christian, forgiveness is the endzone. 

Jesus’ heart for you is the same heart Joseph has for his brothers.

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Mark Driscoll

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