The forgiveness that heals

Christ Jesus showed that forgiving and healing go hand in hand when he said: "Whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk? But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house." The account continues, "And he arose, and departed to his house." Matt. 9:5-7.

Jesus' words "the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins" show it is possible for all of us to learn and practice his kind of forgiveness. Because sin underlies the mortal condition and its inherent discords, all spiritual healing may be said to result from the action of divine forgiveness.

How does Jesus' forgiveness differ from that practiced by the Christian churches for nearly two thousand years? The latter is sometimes very helpful but not necessarily healing. Although intended to be a gracious act, it can, in fact, fasten the belief of sin or disease in one's thought more firmly or, on the other hand, make one feel that since he has been forgiven, there's no need to repent and reform. This attitude can actually lead one away from Christ.

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A spiritual approach to parenting
August 15, 1983

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