“Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
Yet He opened not His mouth;
He was led as a lamb to the slaughter,
And as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
So He opened not His mouth.
He was taken from prison and from judgment,
And who will declare His generation?
For He was cut off from the land of the living;
For the transgressions of My people He was stricken.
And they made His grave with the wicked—
But with the rich at His death,
Because He had done no violence,
Nor was any deceit in His mouth.
Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him;
He has put Him to grief.
When You make His soul an offering for sin,
He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days,
And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand.
He shall see the labor of His soul, and be satisfied.
By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many,
For He shall bear their iniquities.” Isaiah 53:4-10
““For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Mt. 6:14-15
“Please help me to love them no matter how they treat me,” I prayed to God one day. Unbelievable. Incredible. Wild. Shocking. Me, who used to hold onto hatred, anger, rage, bitterness, hurt, pride, judgment, condemnation, bad-mouthing, criticism, control, and manipulation to no end when it came to people hurting me had prayed to the Lord He would help me love people no matter what. No matter how they treat me.
And I meant every word I prayed. And I knew God would answer. And I know God will answer. Because the Lord desires, and even commands, this from every single one of us. That we love and forgive and be merciful no matter how people treat us. Yes, no matter what.
Jesus Christ, Lord forever, King of Kings, Savior of the world, endured the worst and most heinous treatment of any human ever born. And yet on the cross when He bore on Himself the sins of the whole world for all time along with the sin penalty of death, hell, and the lake of fire forever apart from God we all deserve, HE LOVED AND FORGAVE. So that all who repent and believe in Him and the Gospel message, turning from their sins to God and His ways, are forgiven and given everlasting life. The perfect role model for all of us. TO LOVE and TO FORGIVE no matter what. No matter how we’re treated.
How can we possibly love and forgive those who horribly and heinously hurt us? It’s impossible, right? Seems impossible anyway. But it’s not impossible! It’s totally possible! God enables us to do what He commands us to do, as someone told me long ago.
But how? HIS SPIRIT lives inside HIS FOLLOWERS. And His Spirit equips us with the love, mercy, grace, forgiveness, strength, and everything we could possibly ever need to do His will as we live and breathe to love and glorify Him!
What if right now you’re facing the realization and reality there is someone or some people in your life you know you need to love and forgive but find it seemingly impossible? Even knowing now that it is entirely possible with Christ. Yes, possible in Christ, with Christ, and through and for Christ! Where shall you begin?
Love and forgive for the glory of God! No matter how they treat you. Obey God. Your obedience to God is not about what others do. It’s about Christ and what you need to do. The same is true for me. For all of us. Our obedience is not contingent on others. It’s contingent on Jesus. And for Christ’s sake, we need to yield ourselves to Jesus and obey.
For Jesus’ sake, AMEN!