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Featured Mercy, to what extent?

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by thelord's_pearl, Jul 16, 2020.

  1. thelord's_pearl

    thelord's_pearl Active Member

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    In Matthew 5 The beattitudes verse 7 it says 'blessed are the merciful for they will be given mercy'. God is for mercy and I too am merciful but to what extent should you be merciful, if you're always merciful then would it be right to say that everyone would get away with everything and no one will learn their lesson? Or would it be right to say that the Holy Spirit will let you know if you should be merciful in a particular situation? I'm so confused, i thought it would be nice to discuss this. Thank you
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
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  2. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    Extending mercy does not equate to not holding them accountable. Compassion and forgiveness have been extended to you if you are a Christian, yet before you could experience such you had to come to a point of conviction and repentance or penitence, did you not? God shuns us, so to speak, till we approach Him with the correct attitude of heart and mental recognition and confession of our sin and acceptance of HIS WAY of restitution. God's love cannot be without justice, neither should ours be. Chuck Colson, a worldwide leader in prison reform, tried to teach the world higher truths and values in holding one accountable with love.

    True love allows consequences to be suffered by the offender, a false love, an enabling or cowardly love, will not hold another accountable and encourages the offender to continue the offensive behavior which ultimately hurts them.

    Please allow me to share something which I learned after I retired and went back to college to update my transcript. Apparently, first year academic students must take (at FSU, Michigan, anyway) Interpersonal Communication, among others. During my original college years I had to take several Social Science classes of which a lot of the content was implemented in a practical manner in this class. It was a good class implementing regular in-class social exercises using the learned material and techniques. Many times jerks or difficult people are so into themselves and their mannerisms that they do not even realize the impact which they have upon others. Really. A useful 3-point counter to their offensive behavior which we learned is this, "When you do (identify behavior) its affect upon me is that it (deprives me of, hurts me specifically....., etc.-the objective affect) and that makes me feel (specify feelings.)" You do not want to focus upon them ESP in trying to accuse or project their position. The focus is upon how their behavior is affecting YOU. You can then decide how to proceed going by the way that they respond to you clearly and calmly informing them of how they are hurting you. You have to prepare this dialog in advance if possible for the first few times and every time if you find it difficult to separate your feelings from an objective approach.

    Summed up:
    1. Identify offensive behavior,
    2. Inform them how it affects, hurts, deprives you,
    3. Inform them, objectively, how it makes you feel in the relationship.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
  3. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    You are asking: “If I am perfectly merciful (forgiving of others totally) what will keep me from being taken advantage of?”

    That is the same question that would be on the disciples’ heart right after Jesus told them to forgive 7x70, so Christ explains with a parable how you will not be taken advantage of, but you have got to read carefully.

    I use the parable in Matt. 18 extensively as a proof text to show how forgiveness, Love, atonement, grace, and mercy are not one-sided actions but require action on both the giver and receiver to complete the transaction.

    This parable is not explained well by many commentaries.

    Is accepting forgiveness as pure charity required to complete the transaction?

    What part does man play in his salvation?

    How can a person be forgiven by God and still owe God what God forgave?

    Christ explains how God’s forgiveness works by giving God’s forgiveness in a Parable form to explain how we are to forgive, but you are going to have think and study what he says:

    Matt. 18: 21-35

    Peter asked a question and Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but 77 times (or 7x70).

    I would say: “Jesus answered Peter’s question, perfectly and the parable is the follow-up question Peter (and the other disciples) would have on his/their heart(s).

    This Parable will then come out of what is on the hearts of the apostles right after Jesus completes His answer.

    As you asked: “ What keeps people from taking advantage of God and in this case you”?

    So first you have to figure out what the disciples are going to be thinking with Jesus’ answer?

    I would suggest: when Jesus says 7 times 70 or 77 they are thinking: “WOW!! How Can we keep from being taken advantage of by our brothers if we are just going to keep forgiving them every time?” (People always think about how it will impact themselves.)

    Jesus then needs to address this bigger question with His parable.

    Here are some questions I have asked in the past:



    The Master (God as seen in verse 35) is the way the apostles and all Christians are to behave.

    The (wicked) servant I think would be referring to all mature adults, but am open to other alternatives? (This example, for our behavior will later refer, so is it referring to all other humans or just other Christian brothers?)

    The Master (God) would have to be doing all His part completely perfectly and all He can do in unconditionally forgive the servant, but does the servant accept the forgiveness as pure charity (undeserving/unconditional)?

    The servant is asking to “Give me time” and “I’ll pay everything back.” Now this unbelievably huge debt is way beyond any possibility of being paid back even with 1000 years of time and the servant would know that, so is the servant lying with: “I’ll pay everything back”?

    If the servant truly accept unconditional forgiveness of this unbelievable huge debt, would he not automatically have an unbelievable huge Love (really Godly type Love) (Luke 7: 40-50) and would that Love be seen in Loving the Master’s other servants, which it is not being seen?

    If “unconditional forgiveness” had taken place/been completed how could the Master (God) say and do: “Shouldn’t you have had mercy on the other servant just as I had mercy on you?” 34 In anger his master turned him over to the jailers. He would be punished until he paid back everything he owed.”?

    Is there any other debt the servant owes, since Jesus tells us this is what he owed, that the Master “tried” to forgive?

    Does the servant still owe the master, because the servant did not accept the unconditional forgiveness as pure charity and thus automatically Love much?

    In the parable, which scenario would give the wicked servant more “glory” accepting or rejecting God’s charity or does it even matter, since all the glory in the story goes to the Master no matter what the wicked servant does?

    Can the wicked servant take pride (a false pride) in the fact that, in his mind, he did not “accept” charity but talked the Master into giving him more time?



    Christ’s parables address one area of how things work in the Kingdom, but may leave other areas unaddressed (it is only a short story), so we need to be cautious.

    Lots of times you need to put yourself into the audience Jesus is addressing and try to be thinking: what they would be thinking about at the time, because Jesus addresses what is on the heart of the individual person(s) and not what has been verbalized (there are a dozen examples of this).



    I did not really look at the details of the servant throwing the other servant in prison. There are always limits to parables, but look at the subtle differences between what the servants did and what the master did. The wicked servant only put the fellow servant in prison (no mention of torture this could be like Paul’s imprisonment) while the master had the wicked servant turned over to a person (being) for continuous torture?





    Can we start with what we do agree with in this parable, just let me know yes or no:

    1. The master is representing God in the Spiritual Kingdom?

    2. The “turned him over to the jailers. He would be punished until he paid back everything he owed.” Represents Hell in the spiritual meaning?

    3. The millions and millions of dollars represents spiritually the huge debt sin creates?

    4. The wicked servant is a sinner?

    5. The Master’s forgiveness of the servant’s debt is the same as God’s part in forgiving a sinner’s sins?

    6. The servant’s debt was not forgiven, since in the end the master says, he is imprisoned for the debt?

    7. The servant is lying when he says “I will pay everything back” since it is totally not possible?

    8. The servant was asking for time and not forgiveness and gives no indication He accepted the forgiveness as charity?

    If we agree with this we are 90% in agreement. The only question is: “Since the wicked servant still owes the master the huge debt after the master did his part of forgiving the wicked servant, what else must happen for the transaction of forgiveness to be fully completed?
     
  4. Minister Monardo

    Minister Monardo Witness

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    You have already given the short answer, and the True.:)
     
  5. Minister Monardo

    Minister Monardo Witness

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    I realized that I did not support my short answer with a scripture, which is my normal MO.:)
    John 16:13. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
     
  6. 1213

    1213 Disciple of Jesus

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    Jesus says:

    Then Peter came and said to him, "Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Until seven times?" Jesus said to him, "I don't tell you until seven times, but, until seventy times seven.
    Matt. 18:21-22
     
  7. thelord's_pearl

    thelord's_pearl Active Member

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    Thanks for the responses! I do have a question. people who report things to police I do not see that as merciful.. rather, if the police comes after them then they are being merciful but the police then is not being merciful so should prisons be empty and God would do justice in another way like not bless them and ruin their life? that doesn't seem to be the right answer either. I'm so confused. Can anyone help me with this question. Thank you
     
  8. ViaCrucis

    ViaCrucis Evangelical Catholic of the Augsburg Confession

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    "Then Peter came up and said to Him, 'Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?' Jesus said to him, 'I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times.'" - Matthew 18:21-22

    You show mercy at all times, you forgive every time.

    God has no limit on the mercy He extends to you, a sinner; so how much more should you a sinner show mercy and forgive your fellow sinners?

    It is not up to you as an individual to judge or to seek revenge. There are civil authorities to curb civil evil and promote civil righteousness, so that if someone breaks the law they are brought before the court and civil justice is dispensed. As far as moral judgment, God alone stands over all the earth as Judge, and all must stand before Him on the Final Day to give account, as it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, says the Lord, I will repay."

    Therefore if you are struck on the one cheek, do not retaliate, but turn and offer the other cheek as well.
    If you are cursed, bless.
    If you are hated, love.
    If you are deprived mercy, show mercy.
    Pray for those who despise and persecute you, bless those that curse you, forgive those who sin against you, love your enemy.

    "Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful." - Luke 6:36

    -CryptoLutheran
     
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  9. 1213

    1213 Disciple of Jesus

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    I think it depends on many things, what was the crime, does the person regret and say he is sorry? For example, if the person has taken your money, you can forgive, but he should give the money back. This leads also to question, why did he take it. And if he has difficulties, it would be good to think can you help him.
     
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  10. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    If you see a child doing something which might hurt someone or themselves, you tell the parents. They hopefully lovingly discipline the child and the child that accepts the discipline correctly will learn and grow from it. You do not want the child to go on doing wrong stuff because he/she will only get worse and more dangerous for everyone.

    I taught Sunday school Bible class in prison and there was lots of good reasons for some of those prisoners to be there, for one thing they had few other places to go other then church on Sunday morning and felt a strong need for God’s help.

    How do you feel about parents who have the opportunity to lovingly discipline their rebellious disobedient children, but do nothing?
     
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  11. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    ONLY if we were in heaven or heaven were here on earth would your idea hold true. The Apostle Paul told us to be in submission to the ruling authorities here on earth. If someone has broken a law in violating you somehow it is your duty to report them. Your duty to God is to be merciful in how you relate to them but they volunteered to be handled by the justice system when they violated the law. Another duty you have to God is to love yourself for who you are in Christ, a child of God. God's Word informs us that God uses the ruling authorities to punish evil people and God is terribly angered when someone hurts one of His children. Jesus told us to render unto Cesar what is Cesar's meaning worldly ruling authorities. By allowing someone to not pay the consequences of their offense one is enabling them to continue a hurtful, damaging path which usually keeps getting worse and worse. Not only will they continue hurting more and more people but ultimately, they could end up getting killed by someone they offended or by the law.
     
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  12. thelord's_pearl

    thelord's_pearl Active Member

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    Wow, this is still confusing to me and I'm led to another question. What if the wrong-doer is a family member. Would you report your own family member? -is that Scriptural?
    Also, I've had a different experience as if God was telling me I shouldn't have done something which I thought was right but after hugely believe it was the wrong thing to do since I've suffered afterwards for years and it's still not over with. I told someone something about another person that I can't 100% remember now but I'm 99.9% it's true and that would hurt the person if I were to tell them. That thing about the other person and referring to your post would lead me to the path of a duty to report it to the police so do you think I should've reported it to the police if I was 100% sure about it but not have told the person who would be hurt if I told them even if these two individuals are married and that thing is an issue of unfaithfulness/sexual assault? Thank you a lot
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2020
  13. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    You think that you are confused I REALLY am! I have read your post above several times and am still trying to make sense out of what person you are talking about. I am VERY tired as I have only had 4-5 hrs of sleep/night for several days and I need to get to bed but I have a moment and I won;t during the next few days till like now, when I should be sleeping but I believe this is worth it so I will try to give you first what I understand you to be saying then my response.
    You informed someone that their spouse violated you sexually in the past. You do not say whether they were married at the time of abuse so I will guess, No? This person is jealous or afraid you will report their spouse and sees you as a threat so it has hurt your relationship with the person who told? Your last section I cannot make any sense at all out of it. I am sorry, I can't see who you are talking about. Please give them false names or letters or numbers.
     
  14. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    I will chek bak whn I can.
     
  15. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    You need to give much more detail in order to get appropriate advice on this matter, I think, detail only one can feel comfortable giving to a counselor. There are too many unknowns and it sounds like this is a very serious matter. If the offense wasn't done to you but another (let's call them "A") and you were gossiping about another (the perpetrator "B") of what you think went on BUT HAVE NO EVIDENCE it is only a rumor and you could have been being used by "A" knowing your predisposition to gossip in order to hurt "B." One better have concrete evidence (for example be the offended or a witness of the event) before going to the police. This is why complaints against another to police must be done by the offended, I believe, and why without their testimony in the absence of witnesses it is thrown out of court. If you are not the offended it is your duty, I BELIEVE, to go to the offended and advise them to report it to the police. Without their will to file a complaint and to convict there is no case without any witnesses. My advise to report it to the police of which you refer to is MY OPINION. I thought that this might be something of a sexual nature due to your discretion and I have strong PERSONAL opinions esp about incest. Incest is much worse than rape. I KNOW and I have experienced and know 1st hand what evil, hurt, and sorrow transpires for decades when one only forgives the monster and allows them to run free for decades without accountability. Granted it is helping the poor victim some but there has NEVER been accountability. He has never confessed it or its vile, evil, sick and mostorous perpetration. This adult victim I know NEEDS that even though she has forgiven and with people like him ONLY a courtroom and the judgement by his peers out in the open light might have been the ONLY solace this woman could have gotten BUT it is a lot better than not reporting it and getting what she gets now and for the last half century. There are other OPINIONS out there that a Christian should not. You must seek professional legal and/or psychological advise in this matter. The advise you get here, unless professed to be professional, is ONLY people's OPINIONS. You must always go to God and ask Him for guidance when given opinions.
     
  16. thelord's_pearl

    thelord's_pearl Active Member

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    Sorry about that! And sorry to hear you were only able to get 4-5 hrs of sleep at night?
    I also could not understand what I underlined above in your quote and bolded. :S but it's not the most important thing so it should be ok, just I hope you get all the sleep you need.

    I will give letters.

    Ok so I see in the underlined in your quote above that you're not sure, it is in your opinion that it is the duty of the victim to report to police but you do not have scriptural back-up? When you say you must always go to God and ask Him for guidance, I myself have thought about that too and about the the Holy Spirit that sometimes God might not want you to report but to be still and know that He is God. Does that change your opinion?

    The situation is, A believes B commited sexual assault (from the behind). If B did not commit sexual assault there was a D which A is 99.9% doubtful of. A has social anxiety/phobia and recalls that it extremely highly seems like there was no one else behind her except B that could've done it and recalls it seems that she did not turn around right away to look when the sexual assault occured. A recalls reacting to the sexual assault but it seems A did not turn around right away. A cannot recall exactly now. A told C about it and C talked to B about it in which B denied it and A afterwards developed extreme anxiety from worrying for years about if A were to see B and C then B might feel like he's going to break down thinking that anytime A could bring it up again to C in front of B and then B can lose C in marriage. A is currently mentally ok now in that regard. This situation was serious enough but not very serious.

    question- so if A was 100% sure that B commited sexual assault and there was not a D who did it then what should a Christian do?
    Thank you lots
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2020
  17. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    I was only saying that these following days are
    going to be very full also and the only time I may have here is late at night like now when I should be sleeping to continue, but that is OK.

    No you are not going to change my opinion the slightest. I know what I have seen/experienced over near 50 yrs as a result of not reporting a sexual attack and just being merciful. I would not hope that on anybody, ever, ever, ever. It may work sometimes if the monster responds to the unbelievable mercy extension from their victim with a contrite and penitent heart of humility but that is not what always happens. The problem is if the victim forgives this monster and he or she is incorrigible, the monster needs the hand of the law to deal with them BUT if the victim forgives them, what is there to take to the law to help correct their behavior? The victim can no longer file a complaint. There is none if they have truly forgiven and so the monster goes on victimizing even more. More later, got to get to bed. I will continue to read your A< B< C later, thank you for your attmpt at clarifying.
     
  18. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    Sexual sin is very serious. God elevates it above all other sins in severity due to its nature. I have never used this version of the Bible but it seems to say what I am trying to tell you best:
    " There’s more to sex than mere skin on skin. Sex is as much spiritual mystery as physical fact. As written in Scripture, “The two become one.” Since we want to become spiritually one with the Master, we must not pursue the kind of sex that avoids commitment and intimacy, leaving us more lonely than ever—the kind of sex that can never “become one.” There is a sense in which sexual sins are different from all others. In sexual sin we violate the sacredness of our own bodies, these bodies that were made for God-given and God-modeled love, for “becoming one” with another. Or didn’t you realize that your body is a sacred place, the place of the Holy Spirit? Don’t you see that you can’t live however you please, squandering what God paid such a high price for? The physical part of you is not some piece of property belonging to the spiritual part of you. God owns the whole works. So let people see God in and through your body." 1Cor 6:16-20 MSG
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2020
  19. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    Let me say this first. You tell us that you do not know for sure that it was not D (you use "IF", "99.9%" and "extremely highly seems like") and if what occurred was a violation of the law or was something wrong being forced upon you (you do not give your age, faith or lack of it, whether you were a drunk or otherwise voluntary participant at the time who later, after sobering up decided you made a bad choice for "having a good time" with a sexual fling the night before and want to blame other's for your bad decisions of getting drunk or whatever and hanging out in a place of immorality, and you say that you reacted but not which way) then BOTH are participants of the crime, BOTH B and D, the doer and the accomplice. Yes, the other, if only one did it the the other was an accomplice if they did nothing to try to stop it. Just like with incest, the mother or father was an accomplice if she or he knew it but to protect their own interests they did nothing to stop it.

    Please do not think that you are fine if such a crime was perpetrated upon you and there has been no penitent resolution from the offender and if that has occurred you may not be fine. Sexual sin perpetrates an unimaginable amount of trauma (esp. if the victim was a minor and even worse if it was perpetrated (or allowed) by someone who it is their duty and responsibility to protect the vulnerable child.) A VERY COMMON coping or survival technique in such a crime is for the victim to block out or push far from conscious memory things which actually occurred. I believe it is called dissociative amnesia. The poor child just cannot have in the same matrix of their mind a good daddy or mommy and a terrifying monster. This can happen to someone of any age but more so with children, I believe. I say this because person D could also have been a monster at the time but you may need help remembering it. You REALLY, really, really should see a good counselor.

    Sexual sin, sadly today much of such is actually legal today and more such vile acts and perversions are to be made legal, IMO, just as the time immediately preceding the fall of the world empire of Rome. Legal or not if it is sin it WILL be judged by a much higher and powerful JUDGE. Sexual sin is a VERY destructive force and should be stopped and corrected asap.

    That having been said, in response to your answer, IF A was 100% positive B is the violator and A desires to be merciful about it then in MY OPINION A should schedule a meeting with B AND D in the professional office of a qualified mediator for such matters and no less. IMO at this stage C is NOT at all a desired element of this resolution; absolutely NOT! You must NOT try to meld the two relationships as you will only destroy yourself. If C is truly a friend they will allow you this space and if they won't they are not a true friend. By what you share how they have already responded I do not think that she is a friend anyway. If a JUST resolution cannot be achieved using a mediator REPORT it immediately and do not put it off. You could be responsible for this monster violating others the longer you put off dealing with this. In MI anyway, if a person is convicted of CSC (criminally sexual conduct) they go on a public awareness site where they are identified as the risk that they are. This crime seems to be an incorrigible behavior for many cases so they NEED to be known where they are so people can keep their children safe.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2020
  20. Monksailor

    Monksailor Adopted child of God. Supporter

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    thelord'spearl, In answering your questions I ONLY offer my opinion, as I have already said. It may not be Godly advise in this situation as I have been very, very badly hurt almost day after day in the deepest ways for almost 50 yrs due to someone JUST offering mercy BUT NOT demanding justice which does not necessarily mean reporting to the law/courtroom. PLEASE give a good listen to this if you are seeking, which you SHOULD BE, Godly advise: https://www.intouch.org/watch/seeking-godly-counsel

    By the way, you do NOT want to hear my idea of justice for an inhuman monster who starts raping his own daughter at age three and continues most of her life at home. It has to do with something which will inflict the same degree of psychological trauma which will last a life time, long after the evidence of the physical assaults are gone.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2020
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