The One Anothers | Forgive One Another

A few years ago, when I served as a chaplain for Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child, I led the staff and volunteers through a devotional study of the verses featuring “one another” statements. Turns out there over one hundred of these in the Bible.

This morning, reading my YouVersion Bible app, I was reminded of one of these phrases found in Colossians 3.

“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”
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Colossians‬ ‭3:13‬ (New International Version)

I miss being a chaplain, especially at the Processing Center during Collection season. Those were great times highlighted by people working toward one common goal. It was a period filled with great joy that grew exponentially with each shoebox gift that was packed into a big box destined to bless children all around the globe.

The last couple of years have been hard on all of us. My heart aches for our country as we seesaw back and forth through this crisis of divisiveness. From where I sit, it seems like the biggest challenge our nation is facing because it threatens to break us apart. And that, my friends, is simply unacceptable. We need to find common ground. If at all possible, we need to move forward and find our way out of this cesspool that has us land locked in a dogfight of us against them. After all, our Constitution begins with “We the People”. WE. In other words—ONE ANOTHER.

Rainer Bantau
The Devotional Guy™

While he was imprisoned in Rome, the Apostle Paul wrote a letter to the church located in Colossae. As far as anyone knows, Paul never actually visited the church. However, it is believed that Paul’s brother in Christ Epaphras had planted the church and during a conversation with Paul shared his growing concern that some members of the church were beginning to teach false doctrine. Therefore, Paul decided to reach out to the church in hopes of counteracting the false teaching. He urged them to remember to keep the main thing—-Jesus Christ—-the main thing. The same holds true for us today—-if we compromise biblical truth in favor of relevancy, our message quickly loses relevancy.

Back in those days, a letter served as valid substitutes for the personal presence of the letter’s author. So even though Paul had not been to the church in person, his letter was delivered and received with authority.

Paul reminded the Christians at Colossae that as believers we must demonstrate who we are in Christ spiritually, morally, and ethically. Having received Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are no longer the same as we were before. Our hearts and minds have not only been renewed, but transformed.

Christianity centers on community. A healthy Christian community must anchor itself with biblical truth if it is to continue to thrive. Focusing on the truth of God’s Word helps keep false teachers at bay. It is vital that we remain in the Word of God if we are to serve as true witnesses of Christ to an unsaved world. That was true then and remains true today.

What we believe is best demonstrated by how we live. Especially, when it comes to how we treat one another. We must model forgiveness to the broken world around us if we expect the world to have any chance of becoming a more forgiving place. Community is built on forgiveness. Bitterness and anger destroy bonds and decimate community.

In serving the homeless, I have grown to realize a lack of community is the one key factor that leads to chronic homelessness. Without community, there is no one to catch us when we fall nor anyone to help us up once we hit bottom. God did not intend for us to be alone. He made us for fellowship with Him and with those around us. Forgiveness is necessary in order to do that well.

I pray your week is filled with blessings and that you stay grounded in God’s Word.

Blessings,

The Devotional Guy™

#bgbg2 #BibleGateway
To experience life the way God intended, you and I must receive God’s gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. This gift from God is available to all who ask. Will you personally receive the gift of eternal life so that you can experience the total forgiveness from your sins that come through believing in the atoning death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ?
For nothing will be impossible with God (Luke 1:37)

7 Comments

  1. “Without community, there is no one to catch us when we fall nor anyone to help us up once we hit bottom.” This is a sad, but true, statement, as you know all too well, brother. This morning I saw a homeless guy crossing a busy street. He looked familiar, and that’s when I realized I knew this guy! I told my wife ”That guy used to go to church camp with us. I remember even then he had no family to fall back on.”Now, he’s living on the streets.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Many excellent points in this post. The enemy loves to divide us apart. It would do us good to remember this, and use it as fuel to stand strong against his tactics. This will help us to love one another, forgive one another, and help one another.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sadly, that is an all too familiar story, David. Thank you for reading my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you, Bridget. Yes, the devil likes to stay busy.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I bet that study on the one-anothers was powerful.

    We have packed boxes for Operation Christmas Child for years.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s awesome that you have packed shoeboxes. It was a pretty powerful study, particularly given the time and place.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I also used to volunteer with Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child! I like this Post. I believe in forgiveness but that does not mean we have to associate with or be near them after they have hurt you.

    Like

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