Punitive

Re:Verse passage – Ephesians 4:25-32 (day three) 

“…just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.”

To forgive means to decide not to exact punishment for wrongdoing. That is indeed what Christ has done for us. Punishment can take many forms. If I give a friend the cold shoulder after discovering that he misled me about a career advancement opportunity so that he could take that opportunity for himself, I am punishing my friend. If I remain warm in my interactions with him, however, while waiting eagerly for news of hardship or failure that he might encounter as he undertakes that new career opportunity, I am still punishing him, albeit in a very nuanced way. And if I am punishing him, I have not forgiven him. There are often consequences for wrongdoing. But consequences are not in my power to control. Punishment is.

Author: Bryan Richardson

Bryan Richardson is the Associate Pastor to Pastoral Ministries & College and Single Adults at FBCSA.

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