16th May 2017

Many Things To Say – Part 2
New Covenant Forgiveness

“…For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins…”
Matthew 26:28 (NKJV)

We saw in a previous study that Jesus had many things to teach his disciples. These were given after his resurrection and ascension and preserved in the Bible—the ‘Word of God’, for our benefit today. These revelations, including the gospel Paul taught after receiving it by “a revelation of Jesus Christ” (Galations1:12), act as a commentary and clarify some statements Jesus made during his earthly ministry which, after all, was conducted whilst the Old Covenant was still in force.

Some Christians have misunderstood the New Covenant teaching about forgiveness, but Paul in the gospel of grace gives a clear explanation, “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).

A similar message is given by Paul in another letter, “bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do” (Colossians 3:13).

In both verses the same Greek word, translated ‘forgive,’ is used and expresses the idea that forgiveness is a gift freely given, a favour granted by grace, and therefore not based on any merit or works of the one receiving forgiveness.

Paul instructed that his letter to the Colossians also should be read in the church at Laodicea. This message was intended to be a general message to all churches. God in Christ has forgiven (past tense) us; sin has been dealt with on the cross. In faith we need to accept the forgiveness we already have from God in Christ and, in the knowledge of and in gratitude for our forgiveness, reach out to forgive others.

Prayer
Father, we thank you for your mercy in forgiving us through your son. Help us to follow your example and extend mercy to others.
Amen

Study by Eddie Marsh

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About the Author:
Eddie Marsh attends Grace Communion International in Sheffield.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion, Sheffield
Please email for Meeting Place

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Email: sheffield@gracecom.org.uk