Forgiveness Liberates and Heals
Julio C. Rivas, CS
Jesus Christ’s forgiveness of sinners was a spiritual call for transformation. Those who answered the call were made new.
His forgiveness of those who crucified him did not exculpate them, but it freed him. By this act he expressed the power of LOVE-MIND and this exalted him beyond the reach of evil and death.
When the apostle Peter asked Jesus Christ how many times he should forgive those who’ve harmed him, Jesus said, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.” Jesus’ admonition reveals that forgiveness exudes divine power, not weakness.
Forgiving those who’ve harmed us takes away resentment, hatred and vengeance, which are poisonous. Holding onto them can eat away at our mental, emotional and physical health.
LOVE’s mighty grace is found again in the Lord’s Prayer. This cherished prayer connects God’s forgiveness of our failures with our ability to forgive others. 19th century religious reformer M. B. Eddy describes the treatment of forgiveness by the Lord’s Prayer as “Love reflected in love.”
Our expression of SOUL-LOVE neutralizes evil temptations. It instigates spiritual purification which is exonerating. We can then appreciate how forgiveness is its own reward because it conquers evil and leaves us feeling whole and in concord with SOUL-GOD.
Forgiving ourselves and forgiving others are interchangeable and both are the result of giving ourselves to illimitable and omnipotent LOVE-GOD.
When we calibrate our mind/heart to superlative LOVE-GOD we experience absolution and it disables evil targeted at us. The statement “And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors” imparts spiritual power. Think of the statement this way: “My alignment with LOVE-GOD destroys my sins and the evil others have done or plan to do to me.”
LOVE’s supreme might is our liberator and protector.
Sometimes people are tempted to forgive themselves without having uprooted and corrected their human failings. This is not genuine forgiveness but self-justification and self-delusion. We should know that LOVE-illumined forgiveness replaces personal foibles and fault with higher intelligence, right motives and stalwart character.
People suffer when they confuse forgiveness with trusting evil doers. They set themselves up to be hurt again. This is evidence of poor judgment, not of MIND-directed forgiveness. The results are disastrous because it is acting from a position of ignorance, insecurity and dependency. MIND-directed forgiveness is intertwined with wisdom, discernment and authority. It disables evil aims with perceptiveness, alertness and intelligence.
Another common mistake is approaching forgiveness as a means to negotiate a better deal with GOD. Those who do project human elements onto God and end up disappointed and frustrated.
Because God is TRUTH-LOVE it does not haggle with mortals. Freedom and might belong to us when we submit ourselves to TRUTH’s boundless and ever-flowing grace, wholeness and power.
Divine metaphysics teaches us that SOUL-MIND, who is superlative harmony and intelligence, has constructed us of its own divine substance. Our supernal nature, being SPIRIT’s eternal and magnificent manifestation, is exempt from material conditions such as sin, self-condemnation, suffering and death.
By cognizing LOVE-GOD’s preeminence we feel defined by divine wholeness, and sheltered by infinite goodness. It activates our Christly purity and authority. Personal failings are overcome, guilt is elided, and others’ malice is defeated.
MIND-impelled forgiveness obliterates whatever attempts to corrupt or harm us. It exudes supernal wisdom, love and might.