Kingdom Culture – Forgiveness

Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 14 Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful. Colossian 3:12‑15 (NLT)

The last few devotions have been about Kingdom Culture. Jesus’ kingdom is not of this world, but we’re supposed to live like citizens of His kingdom now. That’s what this text here from Colossians is about. Notice that verse 13 says that we are to “make allowance for each other’s faults”. Do you hear the amazing grace in the verse? Essential Christian attributes, like “tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience” in verse 12 include forgiving each other. Why?

While we live in this world, we are not citizens of this world, we are temporary residents. As citizens of Christ’s kingdom, we have a higher calling. But, surrounded as we are, by the citizens of this sinful world, we can act; well, without “tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience” very naturally. God’s suggests that we keep in mind how easy it is for us to blow it. It’s a passionate plea to extend to others that same kindness that we have in Christ. It’s interesting that genuine appreciation of God’s amazing grace in Christ makes us see how much we need to extend it to others. In other words, without Christ’s forgiveness and grace, we don’t deserve, and we couldn’t earn, any “tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience” from God. So, the more we understand this, the more we apply it to others. Why? It’s because these attributes come through the Spirit of God working in us, giving us a profound and abiding love for what Jesus Christ has done for us.