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Making Peace With Your Past Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
June 14, 2022 1:00 am

Making Peace With Your Past Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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June 14, 2022 1:00 am

Any kind of relational and sexual abuse leaves scars. Many vividly remember the abuse they have suffered. Some are troubled by the memories of those they have abused. Forgiveness is not easy. In this message, Pastor Lutzer lists six misconceptions about forgiveness which are biblically incorrect. Healing is possible through God’s forgiveness.

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See horrible abuses suffered or others use even though forgiven by God. They feel dirty feeling turns into depression and anger.

Is there a way out, of being chained to the past. Please stay with the Moody Church in Chicago. This is running to win with Dr. Erwin Sir, whose clear teaching helps us make it across the finish line. Estimates are your current series is about restoring the soul feeling in an age of brokenness. We can't turn back the clock so what do we do Dave, I think in a single sentence what we have to do is to cleave to God to cleave to his promises and believe that God has the ability to take us from where we are to the next step where he wants us to be. It's absolutely true that we cannot praise the teenager did all God, I pray that this accident might not have happened the past is past.

But God is able to forgive it and to give us hope and that's why the ministry of running to win exists and we also want to make resources available so that people are enabled to run the race of life successfully. I have in my hands a book that my wife and I have written, entitled, life-changing Bible verses you should know actually it's not so much about Bible verses as it is about various topics about Christian living. For example, issues such as the glory of God. God grace grief haven't held the Holy Spirit hope the fear of the Lord justification and the list goes on. Each of these topics has two or three pages, but it introduces you to all aspects of Christian living. I think it will be a great blessing to you. It will be a great blessing to your friends for a gift of any amount. It can be yours.

You go to RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 herein running to win were here to encourage were here to guide and to give you hope Lewis means wrote that one of God's better jokes on us is to give us the power to remember the past but give us no power to undo.

We've all wished, have we not for a magic clock to wipe the past away, we think that we remember the past very accurately that happened as we remembered it, but if only the past had been different for many of you. The past is an open wound.

Very sensitive, very raw. How does a woman put her past behind her. If, in point of fact, she comes home one day, as happened and discovered that her husband is in bed with her daughter. What happens when a young boy is lured by a priest into a sexual relationship and a part of the childhood of that boy is forever missing what about the grown boy who is now a man, but inside still a boy. Still longing for the except since that was given to him or I should say longing for the acceptance that was denied him by an abusive father and what about the girl was date raped. How do you put your past behind you.

I have a solution today. It's the only solution is not an easy solution, but it is the only one that is out there. The Bible says that the spirit of the man can endure his illness wounded spirit who can bear what we need to keep in mind is that the deepest wounds that people face are not physical loans.

They are they wounds done by others that just seem to not go away.

But if we live with bitterness and anger, bitterness and anger have a lot of relatives that they always bring into our souls once they are there. Some of those relatives are depression hardhearted nests, rage, and often times directed toward God or the people of God and then people say you know I hate them so.

I hate their God. I'm sure before I use the illustration of Nancy Reagan, who said that her father is a boy in Sunday school, memorized verses, but he was denied the Bible that was available. It was given to the pastor's son who didn't memorize the verses as well, but he was the pastor's boy and so he got.

Nancy said that her father never darkened the door of the church again until he died in his 80s one room to bitterness the Bible says springing up the filing many as you know this is a series of messages on restoring the soul.

And last week I told you I was going to speak on the topic of breaking the cycle what I did not realize is that in my mind the sequence of these messages was just a little bit confused so you're going to get that next week. This week the issue is that having been forgiven by God, we must forgive now tell you what I'm going to do.

I'm going to let you know up front what my agenda is so that you don't have to be listening to the message trying to figure it out when it comes to this matter of hurt and bitterness and an unforgiving spirit.

What we do in our minds as we build fortifications around our wound.

These are fortifications that are built through the years. Often times of rationalization up self justifications of the fantasies of revenge and these fortifications are there and then when a message like this is preached. Antennas go up all over the place saying saying, danger or danger danger someone is encroaching onto my wound while I tell you what I want to do is I want to go under your radar. I want to smash those fortifications by the power of God's word and his blessed Holy Spirit. And I want to get right to your heart and I want to write down all of the denial and the defenses and get right to your wound. That's what I'm aiming for is everyone unclear as to where were going in the next few months. So what I'd like to do, God helping me is based on the 18th chapter of Matthew, though I am only going to be referring to the passage. Incidentally, I preached on this before many years ago, and went through the whole passage but I'm going to assume you know the story of that Jesus told about the need for forgiveness but would like to do is to give you six misconceptions that people have misconceptions that keep people from freedom in Christ and a whole heart. What are those misconceptions. First of all, that we should forgive only when asked that we should forgive only when asked you when Jesus said there in Matthew 18 that we should forgive 707 or some translations say 77. Either way, when Jesus said we should forgive. I don't think that he assumed that each time the offender came and asked for forgiveness. There is such a thing as unilateral forgiveness now in this message. I'm going to be mentioning a lot of first names. I want you to know that these first names are completely disconnected from the stories that I will tell you stories are essentially true, but the names obviously have been changed. So if you think that you know who I'm talking about.

I can tell you with apodictic certainty, you're wrong.

Let's talk about Jennifer. She was told that she should forgive her alcoholic father who abused her, who came into the room at night and whipped her and and sexually even was involved with her and she is supposed to forget that he has not asked forgiveness and she saying, why should I why should I forgive in light of the fact that he hasn't even requested that I listen to this carefully if we tell Jennifer. Jennifer, you don't have to forgive until your dad asks for forgiveness. You know what we're saying were saying that Jennifer has to be imprisoned in her bitterness until her father unlocks the key to her heart and let her free writing is putting a whole lot of responsibility in the hands of an abuser. The simple fact is that Jennifer can have a freedom in Jesus Christ.

Quite apart from whether or not her father asks. Now, even if her father were to ask for forgiveness.

I'm not sure that Jennifer knows exactly whether she would forgive him or not, but she knows that that's not a possibility because her father will not even knowledge the wrong I know there's some Bible teachers who teach that we should not forgive her.

We don't have to until we have been asked to and I understand what they're saying. I understand the passages that they base this on, but I want you to know today that looking at forgiveness the way I do. I disagree with that because it means that someone cannot have a whole heart until the offender cooperates. I want you to know today that there is a sense in which forgiveness can be offered even if it is not received, even if it is not welcome, even if it is not asked for. There is a freedom to what I sometimes call one sided forgiveness. There is some of you here today who been waiting for that father that mother that relative that brother or sister or friend to ask for forgiveness. Don't keep waiting. It may not come. But today there was a freedom that Jesus can give you a second misconception that forgiveness means reconciliation. Let's talk about Linda the woman I mentioned a moment ago who comes home and finds her husband in bed with her daughter with their daughter Linda said that it was as if the world in which she lived, suddenly disappeared and there was no world except the world of on believable the trail hurt a world in which everything that she believed and trusted was shattered and because her husband was in a vulnerable moment to she confronted him with other things that she thought were in his life.

He confessed that yes he had had a number of liaisons that work as well and now suddenly Linda, who in her despair talks to a friend of France's Linda you're a Christian, what you have to do is you have to forgive and forget and you have to be reconciled to your husband and move on as if it never happened and Linda is saying I can do. I Can't pretend as if it never happened. I can't just go on from here is if everything is supposed to be the same and dare I say that it is important for Linda to know that she can forgive even though reconciliation is a separate question. You see Jesus there in the same passage in the 18th chapter of Matthew, he talks about reconciliation. He said if you have something against your brother. If something is happened you go. If it can't be reconciled to take others with you and so forth. And then Jesus says if he will not hear you. Then there is nothing further that you can do but that person has to be looked at as an unbeliever, even Jesus knew that reconciliation is sometimes not possible, not possible for a number of different reasons. It's not possible because the person the offender might not acknowledge the this sin or the crime. Secondly, he may acknowledge it, but consider it minor. This happens in marriage counseling all the time. The woman is greatly hurt in the Madison will look okay, I messed up. But let's let's move on from here. It's really no big deal. Okay okay is not okay with the wife because she is been more deeply hurt and were deeply grieved and she's not prepared to think that reconciliation is possible or it is possible that he acknowledges it, but the whole issue of trust. How do you trust a man who's done all these things.

A man in whom you put your confidence. A man in whom you essentially believe that he was honest. How do you trust him kinds of issues have to be dealt with.

I frequently recommended the book written by Dave Carter entitled torn asunder because one of the ministries that he has in his church in and not California where he is on the staff is to have is to have seminars for couples where there has been adultery working through the situation in the rebuilding of trust in the rebuilding of confidence because, while there can be forgiveness and there should be forgiveness, reconciliation often takes a lot of time and a lot of effort and even then sometimes it fails that we should work toward reconciliation.

Obviously, so let me put it to you very clearly. It only takes one person to forgive, but it takes two people to be reconciled.

Some of you think that if you forgive have to go back to where you where not necessarily going to 1/3 misconception and that is that forgiveness minimizes the offense forgiveness minimizes the offense. So let's talk about Susan. She's part of a family. The family has lots of money. The mother died years ago. The father dies one of her brothers chose her out of her inheritance. She's got a lot of money coming but because he is able. He manipulated the father before the father died. He was able to get a sharp attorney and so basically he ends up with all the money.

Susan is a single mother who could use a few hundred thousand dollars, but her brother has it all and and she doesn't really have enough money to fight it because it was done in such a way that that legally it can't really be changed and so now Susan is told well. Forgive and move on and she saying forgive are you serious don't you understand I mean this to somebody else. It may not be that big a thing but to me it is a huge thing in my brother my younger brother did it and you're thinking I should just say okay forgive and move on as if nothing serious happened. What we need to say to Susan and Susan were not minimize the evil, and I want to call it that the evil that your brother did, but you must forgive and move on.

Now let's get to the parable of Jesus. Remember Jesus said that there was a king who had a servant who owed him 10,000 talents. Each talent is about $1000 multiplied out $10 million and this man owed that much money, and the king was going to throw woman debtors prison and you know what happened. The Bible says that that servant who owed so much money fell at the feet of the king and says, have patience with me and I'll pay you everything.

And the king had mercy upon him, and forgave him the debt can million dollars in what Jesus wants us to see in the paragraph he wants us to see ourselves he wants us to recognize that the $10 million is what we owe God. In fact it's even greater than that because theoretically, that man could have somehow worked it off. Maybe could've won the lottery or something and got $10 million but you and I can never work it off. Could my tears forever flow could my zeal no arrests by know all force sin, not a tone Val must save and that alone we cannot pay our debt. Jesus had to pay it for us. Here's the question is forgiveness free but depends how you look at it it's free to the person who received it and if the person who received it somehow minimizes it. That's just the reality of it, but it's very expensive to the one who gave it because at the end of the fiscal year that King was out by $10 million and had to absorb the loss and Susan is going to have to absorb the loss and she's going to have to absorb the loss and let her brother go free.

All you say pastor that you're missing it. You don't understand, don't you understand I can imagine somebody saying don't you just understand how unfair forgiveness really is. And I say to you today that if you say that forgiveness is on the fair. I thank God because of last you're beginning to understand that it is grossly unfair. What could be more unfair than a spotless, sinless son of God, having laid upon him in iniquity is that he never committed to die for people who were rebellious to pay their price so that you and I could freely believe and be acquitted by God.

Can you think of anything more unfair than that. I want you to know today that after this message is over I'm going to give an invitation I'm going to invite many of you to come in to do something that is incredibly unfair. I'm going ask you to forgive those who have wronged you, my friend. You're not here at the Moody church to participate in an invitation that I gave but God sees no matter where you are. He knows where you are. Some of you are in a car. Some of you are listening at your home or at your business where ever you may hear this message, whether by radio or Internet or some other way. God has spoken to your soul.

There is hope, but I encourage you to lay that bitterness and anger down. Forgiveness is unfair, but thank God for forgiveness because by it. We are redeemed. My wife and I have written a book entitled life-changing Bible verses you should know it's really a discussion of various topics in Christian living, including redemption, including justification. It's intended to help you make progress in the Christian life.

If you read this book you will be introduced to all aspects of Christian living and doctrine for gift of any amount. It can be yours. Here's what you do go to RTW offer.com or if you prefer you can call us at 1-888-218-9337. I want to emphasize that we here at running to win are deeply committed to help you deal with issues in your life so that God may find you and me and everyone listening faithful no matter the pressure, no matter the situations that we are in ask for the book entitled life-changing Bible verses you should know. Go to RTW offer.com or you can pick up the phone and call right now 1-888-218-9337 it's time once again for you to ask Pastor lutes or a question about the Bible or the Christian life.

Broken relationships can cause untold pain and anonymous listener contacted us with this question.

How do you deal with someone who says they have forgiven you continues to not want a relationship with you. This is the case with me and my daughter.

Well I have a word or two to this dear mother, first of all what you need to do is to ask exactly what was your part in causing this disruptor of relationship. Apparently you had done something because your daughter says that she forgives you and that that seems to be the problem.

She says she forgives and yet she doesn't act like it.

So ask yourself again as I'm sure you have done many times. What is it really that I have done and have you adequately asked for her forgiveness. Now if the answer that question is yes. Now we go on to a second stage in this relationship. Your daughter says that she forgives you, but she doesn't want to have anything to do with you. Well, what you need to do is to continue to love her respect her, let her keep her distance because the more you pester her to have a relationship. I can almost guarantee, the more she's going to back away. So what you do is you display loving kindness and care that your responsibility what you need to do is to give her space and trust God that in his grace as you are loving and you are not condemning that your daughter will eventually soften her heart and will be reconciliation. Don't try to work it reconciliation too hard after you have done your part. God has to do the rest.

Thank you Dr. Luther for your answer. If you'd like to hear your question answered.

Go to our website@rtwoffer.com and there you can click on ask Pastor lutes or or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 running to win is all about helping you understand God's roadmap for your race of life. Your past may be a black hole sucking all the joy from your life, even bright prospects for tomorrow are due by memories can't shake next time I'm running to win. You'll find freedom from the despair of harboring a grudge in the way back to hope for the future. Even when injustice is being done against you plan to join us for Dr. Erwin lutes or this is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the Moody church


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