For They Know Not What They Do

 

Prayer MattersBy LaChelle “Sister Shelli” Anderson 

Once I heard a minister speaking to married couples say that every marriage could be saved if there were a redeemer in the marriage. He went on to say that one of them in the relationship has to be the redeemer, otherwise, God cannot come in and redeem the marriage.  Think about it, the Bible says that God is against divorce, but He allows it because of the hardness of hearts (Mark 10:5).  There was no redeemer in the marriage.

I submit to you this day, that God wants to redeem not only marriages, but our relationships, situations, and circumstances that seem unredeemable.

A “Redeemer” is defined as one who rescues and delivers from the bondage of sin, according to Webster’s American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828 Edition.

Picture Jesus on the cross.  He’s been pierced in his hands and ankles with nails.  He has a crown of thorns on his head.  He’s covered with blood from the excruciating thronging He received and God looks at Him and turns His back. Why does God turn His back on Him? Jesus needs Him more than ever. Why doesn’t God redeem Him right now?  The reason is because Jesus is covered with our sins and God cannot look on or be associated with sin.  But wait, it’s not over.  Jesus, our Redemeer, responds by asking His Father to, “Forgive them for they know not what they do.”

Jesus took our sins, our infirmities, and our transgressions, then He asked God for our forgiveness – He became our Redeemer, when He asked His Father for our forgiveness.

Now, Jesus is no longer covered with sin, but covered with redemption. Now, God can come in and give Him power to overcome the principalities and powers in high places.

Jesus Made Our Redemption A Reality

If Jesus had not forgiven our sins, redemption would not have been possible for us.  Now, when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we can ask for forgiveness for ourselves, our loved ones, our work relationships, our situations, and our circumstances. The Redeemer comes in and takes care of it. Glory to God!

You see, sin, bitterness, coldness and unforgiveness shuts God off from helping you. But forgiveness opens the door for God to come in and bring healing, wholeness and restoration to your life, situation or relationship. Hallelujah!

Receiving Your Redemption 

How many of you need a Redeemer to come in to your life, relationship or situation? Here are four steps to take to allow God to redeem your life:

1. Do not seek revenge.

Romans 12:19 says, “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but leave the way open for God’s wrath.  Vengence is Mine, I will repay says the Lord.” So God sees the situation you’re in, just like He saw Jesus, but he does not want you to avenge yourself. Instead of saying, “Well, if they do this, I’m going to do that,” or “I’ll show them, let me go report them to…” what if you just did what Jesus did and say, “Father, forgive them, for they know not, what they do?”

2. Be imitators of Christ

Ephesians 5:1, AMP says, “Therefore be imitators of God (copy Him and follow His example and walk in love as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us.”

Jesus forgave us for the sins we committed yesterday, today and forever.  We must be imitators of Jesus and forgive all, yesterday, today and forever.

Here are a few of the ways Jesus demonstrated forgiveness:

• He overcame evil with good (Romans 12:21)

• He blessed those who persecuted Him (Romans 12:14)

• He blessed and did not curse (Romans 12:14)

• He didn’t murmur or complain or talk about the problem repeatedly (1 Corinthians 10:10)

• He lived peaceably with all men (Romans 12:18)

Before Jesus died, He knew one or several of His disciples would betray Him, but He still honored and forgave them all. We are to be imitators of Christ in our lives, our situations and our relationships. When we overcome evil with good, bless those who persecute us, not curse, not murmur or complain and choose to live peaceably with all despite how they treat us, we have chosen to be imitators of Christ and “forgive them for they know not what they do.” Forgiveness allows our Redeemer to deliver us.

3. Use your “Get out of Hell” card and forgive (Colossians 3:12–13)

Remember the Monopoly game? In this game, you bought multiple properties and buildings and sometimes you’d land in jail, but if you had your “Get out of jail card” you didn’t have to go to jail.  Well, I’m saying to you that if you feel like you’re in Hell, use your “Get out of Hell card” and forgive. If your situation seems hopeless, then:

  • Forgive the Hell in your home
  • Forgive your boss or the staff who treats you badly
  • Forgive the Hell in your family
  • Forgive the Hell in your relationships
  • Forgive the people trying to throw you out or get you fired
  • Forgive the bill collectors

Forgiveness is your “Get out of Hell card” and if you present it at the first sign of Hell, the Redeemer will get you out of hell.  You see, when you accepted Jesus as your Lord, you were guaranteed not to go to Hell after you die, but that didn’t mean you wouldn’t experience some forms of Hell on this earth.

When you don’t forgive the Hell in your situation, life or relationship, you become the “they,” in “they that know not what they do.” Don’t become the “they.”

When Jesus said “they,” He was referring to all sin and sinners, but when you accepted Jesus as your Savior over sin, you are no longer the “they.”  But each time you choose not to forgive, you become the “they.”  If you don’t forgive the “they,” the Redeemer can’t show up on your behalf. The “Get out of Hell card” is in your hands.  Use it. It’s Free!  Hallelujah!

Do you remember when Stephen was being stoned to death? (Acts 7:54). He asked that their sins not be held against them (lay not this sin to their charge).  Jesus was on the right hand of the Father and He stood up and looked directly at Stephen. I wonder if Jesus was hoping that God would stand up while He was on the cross, and maybe that’s why, when God turned His back, Jesus cried, “Abba, Abba, why hast thou forsaken me?”  Maybe Jesus didn’t realize until He got to heaven that forgiveness had to be given (spoken) before God could come in and redeem or do anything. After Stephen forgave (spoke it), Jesus could stand up on His behalf and forgive all those who stoned Him.  Glory to God!

4. Is Anything Too Hard For The Lord? (Genesis 18:14)

Jesus wants you to believe that He can redeem your life, situation or relationship. So I’m here to remind you that life is not fair and you will have some tough situations to overcome in this lifetime, but you can overcome them, if you make a decision:

• Not to avenge yourself

• To be an imitator of Christ

• To use your “Get out of Hell card” and forgive

• To believe God can redeem your life, situation or relationship

I believe that we are all in situations, circumstances and relationships that we can’t, in and of ourselves, handle, but with God’s help we can forgive and then Jesus our Redeemer can deal with the situation, circumstance or relationship.

Last month, I submitted an article to this blog (Prayer Matters and It Works) right before I was scheduled for surgery. During my recovery I received notification it was published.  Hallelujah!  I sent it to all of my friends and loved ones and asked that they share it with their friends and loved ones.  Well, a few weeks later during my follow-up visit with my doctor, I was notified of a negative diagnosis and had to receive additional treatment.  I shared this information with one family member and they quickly spread the negative news to everyone and it continued to be shared with others.  I was deeply hurt that the negative news received more attention than the positive news.  But, I decided not to take offense.  I accepted God’s Word that in Jesus’ name, I was healed and I asked God to forgive them, “for they know not what they do.”

You see, we were never created to handle all of life’s turbulences. When we accepted Jesus, He bore our pains, griefs, transgressions and iniquities and we just need to make a decision not to accept the pain, the grief or transgression placed against us.  I chose to use my “Get out of Hell card” and forgive.

The card is in your court.  Use it and Forgive.

Remember – if I never see you face to face, I’ll see you in Heaven.  Love ya, Sister Shelli!

LaChelle Patrice Anderson (aka Sister Shelli) is a 2009 graduate of Word of Faith Bible Training Center formerly in Southfield, Michigan, and founder of FirstFruits Living Publications and FirstFruits Living Ministries. Sister Shelli started a street ministry where she feeds the needy in Michigan through a monthly Free Bag Lunch and Prayer Project. Your purchase of her book, “Our Family’s Daily Prayer Devotional” which is available for $2.99 at Amazon.com, will feed 3 people. For more information on volunteer opportunities with the monthly Free Bag Lunch and Prayer Project, visit Sister Shelli’s website at www.myprayerletter.com. Sister Shellit is also available for speaking engagements. To find out more, please send a letter of interest and guidelines to LaChelle@myprayerletter.com.