All of us have been offended at one time or another but what does scripture say about clinging to an offense? When we become blind to our own faults and desire vengeance no matter the consequences, we’re beginning to put the hurt of that offense above God in our lives. Join Pastor Lutzer as we again address the topic of “When You’ve Been Wronged,” as we learn together that whatever we do not forgive, we pass on.
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Transcript: Welcome to “5 Minutes with Pastor Lutzer.” I’m so glad that you joined us today as we continue this series, “When You’ve Been Wronged.” If you were with us last time, you know that I gave you an assignment and that assignment was to write down all of the wrongs that have been done against you. We emphasized a verse in the book of Proverbs, which says that an offended brother is like a walled city and some of you have very deep walls—they go down to bedrock. The purpose of this series is to help us to tear those walls of shame and anger down and help us get on with living the Christian life with a new sense of freedom.
That’s where we are going in this series and I want to remind you that Satan has a mixed bag of offenses that he throws at us. I’m going to name just a few, for example, the offense of broken promises, perhaps a man said to you, “I love you” and later on you discovered that what he really meant was “I love myself and I want you.” So, you’ve been lied to, you’ve been abused, all of those offenses fester in our lives and as we shall see in future times together, Satan takes advantage of them.
Today, I want you to think about not just what has been done against you, but what you have done against others. Because remember, whatever we don’t forgive we pass on. I want you to meditate on that for a moment, and this has been my observation, that people who are deep into sin do not see the depths of their sin; they only see the sins of others. To put it very clearly sin blinds us to our own faults so that we keep going in the wrong direction, justifying ourselves all along the way. When Jesus was speaking to the Pharisees, he said, “You know, you see a beam in somebody else’s eye and you think that you have only a speck in your eye, but actually the opposite is true. You have a beam in your eye. What you see in your brother’s eye is only a speck. You know, it’s been my experience that the ability to see ourselves the way in which others see us and the way in which God sees us is a divine gift.
So last time, I asked you to emphasize what has been troubling you, the offenses against you. Today, I want you to think and to list the offenses that you have done to others. We need to be honest here and that’s the beginning point of a new sense of freedom toward God. Now, what is it that you desire? Well, it may be vengeance and we’re going to talk about that next time because the desire for vengeance, often times, is like an idol in our lives. We say I can’t move beyond this until this happens—that happens. Well, you know that there are so many offenses in this world. There are all kinds of things that will never be made right. So as I leave today, I leave you with another assignment. Is there an idol in your life that is more important to you than your relationship with God? You say, “Pastor Lutzer, what in the world are you talking about?” Well, next time that will be clarified.
Thank you so much for joining us today and as for today—by the way, even as you search your own heart, let us remember, you just go with God.