How far should we forget sin?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by JRG39402, Feb 27, 2009.

  1. JRG39402

    JRG39402
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    Wouldn't you agree that though we may see a sin such as child molestation as completely forgiven once the molester is saved and radically changed for Christ, we should still in our wisdom not allow them to be involved in children's ministry?

    On another related topic, should a church committee completely disregard the sin of a potential pastor before they got saved?
     
  2. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    That is not a lack of forgiveness; it is recognition of weakness.

    The child molester is not being punished by being excluded from a children’s ministry. He or She is being protected from a known temptation and weakness. You could focus on the children and say they are being protected also and they are, but from the adults point of few they are being protected by not being exposed to temptations which they have fallen to before. If they have truly repented and don’t want to fall to the same temptation then they will recognize and appreciate this. Then again if they have not really repented and secretly plan to engage in the same activity in the future then they would be indignant and offended.

    We are each tempted in different ways and we each have our own strengths and weaknesses. Recognizing these is the key to effective ministry. Sins that we have fallen victim to, even before we are saved, are sins they may tempt us in the future.

    Yes the committee should consider such sins. Yes with a mind of forgiveness but that does not mean you pretend it never happened.
     
  3. SBCPreacher

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    I think there's a big difference between forgiveness and having to suffer the consequences of your actions.

    the child molester can be forgiven, but the consequences of his actions requires that he not be around children.
     
  4. ajg1959

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    But can we as humans actually keep children away from a child molestor without feeling some sort of fear, animosity or disdain for him? And if we cant, then have we truely forgiven him? If we purposely treat him differently because of his past sin, then are we not still holding that sin against him?

    This is why I say that it is impossible for us to forgive in the way that God forgives.

    Just my opinion
    AJ
     
    #4 ajg1959, Feb 27, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2009
  5. donnA

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    rarely do consequences of sin go away, even in scripture people suffered the consequences, nothing in the bible that says otherwise.
     
  6. ajg1959

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    I agree Donna, but if we impose those consequences ourselves, then are we still holding the sin against the person, and is that true forgiveness?

    It is God's job to impose consequences on sin, not ours.

    AJ
     
  7. Tom Bryant

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    Actually, it is also the states responsibility. A child molester is almost inevitably banned from being closer than a certain distance from any child without direct and strict supervision.

    There are also repercussions with the people of the church. To allow a convicted child molester would break the trust that parents have in the safe care of their children.

    God can forgive and I can forgive freely. But trust is earned. Forgiveness and trust are different.
     
  8. Salamander

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    Forgiveness is to be as complete on our part as far as God forgives, but never without PRUDENCE.

    "Once bitten, twice shy":godisgood:
     
  9. ajg1959

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    The banning is by the state, and we should obey that ban, and I am not saying that we should forget about the risk a child molestor imposes on our kids....all I am saying is that this is not true forgiveness, and that we are incapable of true and complete forgiveness like God forgives.

    If you cant trust a person because of his past sins then you havent truely forgiven them...you are still holding their past sins against them. In the case of a child molestor this is the only safe and prudent way to go, but, how can we say that we forgive them?

    Let me ask this question. If someone harms you, can you say "I forgive you, but I want you to suffer because of what you did?" If you wish for vengence then you are not forgiving.

    We are supposed to let God handle the chastisment and vengence, ect, but we take it upon ourselves as humans to seek and demand punishment on those we deem bad. We are not capable of always forgiving to the point of just letting it go, and if we dont let it go then we havent forgiven at all.

    When a thief or murderer is released from prison, how long should we, as christians shun them? Even in cases where the ex-offender has turned his life around and has recieved complete forgiveness from God, and they have paid thier debt to society, the people of the church still hold thier past against against them. Is this forgiveness? I see this all the time with christians.
    AJ
     
  10. Tom Bryant

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    No one is talking about shunning anyone. We receive them into membership, we disciple them and we help them to grow.

    And you are right. To hold a person's past against them in terms of fellowship is not forgiveness. But Paul talked about the fact that he could be put on the shelf for something he had done. (1 Cor. 9:24-27) But fellowshipping with another believer who happens to be a convicted murderer and allowing them to lead a children's/any other ministry is, to me, 2 different issues.
     
  11. ajg1959

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    A convicted murderer can never, because of his past, hold a church office? Seems to me there were many murderers in the Bible that God rose to leadership positions and even set aside as examples to us..."a man after God's own heart"

    You and I are not in disagreement in that we as humans must be wary of folks, I agree with you there. But, this wariness and continued distrust means that we havent forgiven as God forgives...we are not capable of total forgiveness.

    I have been in jail, and I can tell you firsthand that there are many repentent people there that are truely changed...and I have also been in church for years, and there are many unrepentent folks there every Sunday with meaness and bad intentions in their hearts. How can we judge the heart of a person? I know convicted murderers that I would fully trust with the care of my child, and I know some people at church that have never been convicted (because they havent been caught yet) of anything, but I wouldnt trust them with a banana if it meant anything to me.

    It is only human to judge folks and form opinions, but maybe we should judge them by what we SEE in their lives today, and not by what we have HEARD about their lives in the past.

    Bottom line is this, we cant judge a persons heart by their police records. Only God knows a person's heart, and since we cant let go of people's pasts then we are not able to truely forgive like God does.

    AJ
     
  12. ajg1959

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    One thing I would like to add here.

    When we hold a persons past against them, we essentially keep them from moving forward. If an ex-offender really wants to restore his relationship with God and the church cant forget his past and accept him as a repentent sinner just like they are, and they constantly shun him, avoid him, and tell him all the things he "cant do" because of his past, then they are making it very hard for him to pull himself up out of his past, and he remains dejected and miserable. A limited fellowship or a fellowship with conditions is really not fellowship at all.

    I have learned that before I judge a person and before I feel like that I am better than them because of their past, that I must remember that it is only the Grace of God that keeps me from being just like them.

    I cant always do that though, and this is why I say that we are not able to totally forgive like God does.

    AJ
     
    #12 ajg1959, Feb 27, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2009
  13. Thinkingstuff

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    I'll forgive them as soon as they're put six feet in the ground. See, I'm forgiving.
     
    #13 Thinkingstuff, Feb 27, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2009
  14. ajg1959

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    At least you are honest and not pretending to be forgiving.

    My wife just pointed out that she could never, ever forgive someone that harmed our 3 year old, and I agree. But you are right, we probably would forgive them after they were dead, but not while they live.

    AJ
     
  15. ajg1959

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    Are you saying that you wouldnt fellowship with an ex-offender that has turned his life around for the Lord? You still want him dead?
     
  16. Thinkingstuff

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    I'm glad the person turned his life around. Still there are consequences for sin. Some require death. Hey, I'm not keeping eternity from the individual just opportunity to hurt more people. Don't want a backslider hurting our kids do we?
     
  17. ajg1959

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    Thank you, you have just proved the point that I have been trying to make....that we are not capable of total and true forgiveness.

    AJ
     
  18. Thinkingstuff

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    I never said I could or would. I'm nothing like Christ or the Father. Maybe in my resurected body I could when I see clearly. But now? No way. A better reflection would be is it wise to be capable of total and true forgiveness? I suspect in this war zone we call earth no is a reasonable answer.
     
  19. JRG39402

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    See, I think this is a good topic for Christians to discuss. Forgiveness.
     
  20. Crabtownboy

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