There is another stumbling block to forgiveness. When unspeakable events--events filled with shame, fear, anger, or even violence--stalk our thoughts, it is very difficult to not to feel resentment. Our own thoughts, and the opinions of others, tell us that we are justified in our judgment. Perhaps we are even bitter. We try to make sense of the facts. We may ask “Why?” And, without an answer from God, it is nearly impossible not to feel overwhelmed.
In the very same breath, we cry for justice against those who hurt us while begging for mercy to reach our own pain. But, God has required you to choosejustice or mercy. You can't have both.
One of God's laws, the law of sowing and reaping, is demonstrated in judgments. Matthew 7:1-2 is a red letter verse. It is Jesus' take on the subject. It is God's heart. Again, Jesus tells us in Luke 6:37-38 that our heart towards a matter can determine spiritual outcomes in our own life. This is clearly the case when it comes to justice or mercy.
The pain is real. The sin is real. And, God is a just God. You can seek justice. But, with whatever measurement you use to judge, you will be judged.
When we say, "I hate that person," you are crying out for justice. When we make vows like: "I will never drink like my father!" we are making a judgment that comes from our pain, from bitterness.
If we allow hell to trap us, to keep us swimming in bitter judgments, the demonic hosts have the legal ground (a foothold) to bring all the reaping and punishment that we deserve from a just God. That is hell's plan.
God has another plan. His justice was satisfied at the Cross. Jesus' death was unspeakable. Horrible. Yet, his last words echoed the heart of His Father, the heart of mercy (Lk 23:34). It is Jesus' death which satisfied the justice of God for every unspeakable act, every hurtful statement, every quiet torment, including yours. His death made it possible for us to move from justice to mercy.
Do you want mercy? Hear God's heart: " ... if you have anything against anyone, forgive him and let it dropleave it, let it goin order that your Father Who is in heaven may also forgive you your failings and shortcomings and let them drop. (26) But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your failings and shortcomings (Amplified Bible). We will receive what our heart demands. You can escape the torment of the enemy and the prison of bitterness. Forgive from the heart (Mt 18:35) and enter into our Heavenly Father's mercy.
Mat 7:1-2 (NAS)
"Do not judge so that you will not be judged. (2) For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.
Luk 6:37-38 (NAS)
"Do not judge, and you will not be judged; and do not condemn, and you will not be condemned; pardon, and you will be pardoned. (38) Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure--pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return."
Mat 18:35 (The Message)
And that's exactly what my Father in heaven is going to do to each one of you who doesn't forgive unconditionally anyone who asks for mercy."
Luk 23:34a (The Message)
Jesus prayed, "Father, forgive them; they don't know what they're doing."