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The Spirit's Power to Forgive - John 20:22-23

After Jesus said that, he breathed {on the followers}. Jesus said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive people's sins, then their sins are forgiven. If you don't forgive people's sins, then their sins are not forgiven." (ERV) Full Text

Key Thought

Jesus ties personal forgiveness of others to our own forgiveness in the Lord's Prayer. Here, he reminds us that the Holy Spirit was crucial in giving the gift of forgiveness in church setting. Clearly part of the work of the Spirit in this context is discernment and authority to forgive as God's community. However, the Spirit, who forms Christ in us and brings to maturity spiritual fruit in us, is crucial in our power to forgive. So our prayer probably should be that the Lord continue to fill us, to guide us, to lead us, and to transform us by his Spirit so that we can truly be his agents of redemption, reconciliation, and grace.


Today's Prayer

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Father in heaven, glorious and mighty, please forgive my sins as I am forgiving the sins of those who have wronged me. In Jesus' name. Amen.


Today's Verses in Context


The day was Sunday. That same evening the followers were together. The doors were locked, because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Then Jesus came and stood among them. Jesus said, "Peace be with you!" After Jesus said this, he showed the followers his hands and his side. The followers were very happy when they saw the Lord. Then Jesus said again, "Peace be with you! The Father sent me. In the same way, I now send you." After Jesus said that, he breathed {on the followers}. Jesus said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive people's sins, then their sins are forgiven. If you don't forgive people's sins, then their sins are not forgiven." Thomas (called Didymus) was not with the followers when Jesus came. Thomas was one of the twelve. The other followers told Thomas, "We saw the Lord." Thomas said, "I will not believe it until I see the nail holes in his hands. And I will not believe until I put my finger where the nails were and put my hand into his side." A week later the followers were in the house again. Thomas was with them. The doors were locked, but Jesus came and stood among them. Jesus said, "Peace be with you!" Then Jesus said to Thomas, "Put your finger here. Look at my hands. Put your hand here in my side. Stop doubting and start believing." Thomas said to Jesus, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to Thomas, "You believe because you see me. Those people that believe without seeing me will be truly blessed." Jesus did many other miracles that his followers saw. Those miracles are not written in this book. But these things are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. Then, by believing, you can have life through his name.

John 20:19-31 (ERV)

 

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Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.


 
What Jesus Did
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Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, "Lord, when my brother won't stop doing wrong to me, how many times must I forgive him? Should I forgive him as many as seven times?" Jesus answered, "I tell you, you must forgive him more than seven times. You must continue to forgive him even if he does wrong to you seventy-seven times. "Matthew 18:21-22 (ERV)

When you talk, don't say any bad things. But say things that people need—things that will help other people become stronger. Then the things you say will help the people who listen to you. And don't make the Holy Spirit sad. The Spirit is God's proof that you belong to God. God gave you that Spirit to show that God will make you free at the right time. Never be bitter or angry or mad. Never shout angrily or say things to hurt other people. Never do anything evil. Be kind and loving to each other. Forgive each other the same as God forgave you in Christ.Ephesians 4:29-32 (ERV)

Yes, if you forgive other people for the things they do wrong, then your Father in heaven will also forgive you for the things you do wrong. But if you don't forgive the wrong things people do to you, then your Father in heaven will not forgive the wrong things you do.Matthew 6:14-15 (ERV)

 

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