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Forgive: The Power of Letting Go

Eric Walsh


Many live a life in the shadow of pain, guilt and shame.  They are carrying a burden for which they can be freed if they can learn to forgive. 


Eric Walsh

Pastor and Physician



  • March 4, 2019
    7:00 PM
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A message tonight is entitled The Power of letting go the power of letting go forgiveness as an agent for healing forgiveness as an agent for healing Let us pray Father God we thank you Lord for this opportunity to study a word in the spirit of prophecy on this issue now Lord once again I ask that you make me just the nail upon the wall or rusty sorry nail Lord upon that nail or to ask that you hang a portrait of Jesus Christ whatever it was NOT be seen or heard tonight instead father let us hear word from the throne room of grace as our prayer in Jesus is precious and holy name Amen out of patient once who was constantly ill or urgent care so I often see a lot of people who sometimes they see their primary care physicians a lot but a lot of times they don't make that connection so they come in and see us and this woman in her thirty's would come in would various complaints all over the place. And always would be would seem like it was the end of life for her with every complaints over wasn't a serious migraine headache it was very vague abdominal pain sometimes it was blower back pain all kinds of different things and dealing with this place and I found she had she she she it wasn't really medicines she was looking for some people they want opiates and if we had time as we going to really talk about this all opiate epidemic and what it really is about here in America but that wasn't her objective she was dealing with emotional pain that had never been resolved. And she was doing what we call in medicine she was some matter sizing In other words the pain on her spiritual being on her meant to being on her emotional being her body was sending into her physical body to make her aware that there was something that had never been dealt with and so she was living from symptom to symptom condition to condition as her body is only really reflecting that her mind has unfinished business with her past long story short it turns out this woman when she was younger had been sexually assaulted she had been abused she had been neglected some horrible things that happened to her and in time all of those things that manifested and the individual and individuals plural what caused her this pain she was still carrying resentment for now these people were long gone out of her life but the weight of what happened and almost as important if not more importantly the weight of who did it was riding her and causing her disease and i Health was a lot of the really good about the organic aspect of it but there is a whole emotional component to being healthy and I want to reserve believe that we are given the Sabbath we're given a Sabbath because the Sabbath one of the most important components of the Sabbath is to get your spiritual emotional mental rest it's not just physical rest there's a whole other component in fact when there cast. Revelation as a study Revelation the Sabbath school lesson a line a legacy and they have no rest day or night powerful What a great is punishment you could have is to never rest. So if you never deal with what or who caused your pain you might not ever rest a Bible has so many stories about a few of them on forgiveness and only in a sermon I don't get multiple Bible stories but the common theme of forgiveness is in all of the stories Genesis 50 verse 15 the Bible says and when Jesus I was I would Josephs brethren when Joseph brethren saw that their father was dead Jake of a died they said Joseph will purge venture he has and will certainly requite us all of the evil which we didn't him and he sent a messenger on to Joseph saying the father did command before he died saying so shall ye say on to Joseph forgive I pray thee now the trespass of that brother and and their sin for they did evil they did on to the evil and now we pray thee forgive the trespass of the servants of the God of the father look at Joseph's response what his brother said them as message the Bible says Joseph wept when they spoke to him powerful so his brothers and you all know the story Joseph brothers are some of the most There's a most grimy guys in the whole scripture I mean granted they have brothers but come on me 1st A plot to kill the poor kid and Granted my wife and I have this discussion all the time whether he was big headed or arrogant a spoiled brat what he was I don't know I give jewels of the benefit of the doubt he had some crazy dreams and told everybody bottom maybe I was in the smartest move he sort of kept that to himself All Things Considered as family dynamics but I don't think it warranted death or selling a poor kid into slavery is a bit of an extreme response. But his brothers did this and I can't imagine what it would have been like I want you to get this as Joseph was on the back of that caravan I probably looking backwards as the Ishmael lights took him off to Egypt screaming and agonizing and your brother how could you I can't imagine what had been like for him that long ride as his brothers fade into the distance as Joseph is screaming for their help and assistance don't do this and watching on some of their faces as they laugh some of them look away and shame that he didn't have the courage to stand up to the rest of the mob of the brotherhood and stop it some of them feeling like they've got finally gotten back at him that showed on their faces and as Joseph Can you imagine really pulls into the where bit of quarters are they sell the slaves in Egypt and he looks around in a foreign people foreign land foreign foods foreign gods he knows nothing of any of this can you imagine what part of for picks him out of the line up to bring him to his house to work on that and we think it why did my brother do this to me his brothers don't forget what they did to him so much so that they think the only buffer between them and revenge from Joseph is the fact that Jacob is alive that's that tells you how little spiritual growth they had as well Joseph was literally the 2nd most powerful man on the planet in many ways if he wanted revenge Jacob could not have stopped him when Joseph who had forgiven his brothers completely hears that they are still wrestling with what happened in ways he has moved beyond he begins to weep and I would argue he doesn't I think for them more than he does for himself. Verse 18 that his brother also went and fell down before his face and they said Behold we be thy servants here they sold him into slavery now they want to be his slaves Joseph said unto them fear not and this is a key statement for forgiveness revenge and retaliation also says fear not for am I in the place of God If you are unable to forgive if you live your life hoping to exact revenge on those who have hurt you you sit in the place of your trying to sit in the place of God I was working with Bloods and Crips most of you probably know to bloods in the Crips are bloods in the Crips the 2 street gangs that started in Los Angeles after really. An industrial kind of collapse of jobs in the city and some other things happened and where we were in L.T. in Pasadena. The Crips were in altitude I believe the bloods were in Pasadena and a church a Sunday church started a ministry reclaiming these young men and some young women back into society back into the fold into church powerful work as my role working at that health department they brought me in and I was working with them I'll never forget I got a call at about 531 night that one of the guys that we were working with had been shot 6 times in Los Angeles worse than that his girlfriend and a mother of their And the mother of the child they had together was shot once the news was that he survived is 6 bullets she did not survive the one that called me at my office and said you need to get over here because these guys one of the guys that are here want to go and get revenge on who did this to the guy who was shot and his girlfriend. And Dr Walsh we think you're the only one who can stop the revenge from happening me the baby fortunately was in a car but wasn't hit so I rushed over there after work I get there and here is these strong and I mean I mean the word I would use these are street soldiers these are guys who do not fear anything or anyone who have no trouble pulling the trigger. To defend the honor and reputation of a gang or of their friend and here are these big strong guys are we playing and crying that this thing has happened to sit at the head of the table and I don't know what to say to stop them from going and exacting revenge in fact one of the talks I used to give in the city was the talk of violence as a contagious disease which you find that when violence happens it often spread like a contagion and here was an example where these guys could all go and shoot somebody else and of course it would then escalate into a full out war on the streets sitting at the head of the table as these guys are crying as they're upset and demanding that someone pay for what happened and I say to God What do I say Lord words that came to me were scripture tell them Vengeance is mine saith the Lord I will repay and I said to those Street Soldiers if one of you lift a finger to exact revenge on whoever did this you are saying that your God Joseph says it was brothers here those guys began to weep cry we began to pray and nobody ever went to get revenge on anyone the young man that was shot 6 times I would get him into a counselor get mental health is back up on his feet and was able to get back to work and no one ever did any retaliation it stopped right there. The reason forgiveness is important because if you aren't able to forgive you will carry the weight of trying to harm someone else Joseph says listen I'm not God Some of going to get revenge on you for what you did to me it's going to be him and not me verse 20 says but as for you you thought evil against me a little Joseph turned around but but God minute government good to bring to pass this day to save as it is this day to save much people alive now therefore fear you not I will nourish you and your little ones and he comforted them and when we do the Bible says He spoke kindly to them in other words what Joseph's response to their fear is and to what they did to him is Joseph's response is listen I'm not going to exact revenge in fact I'm going to take care of you I'm going to love you I'm going to speak kindly to you I believe that it is Joseph actions that sets a big part of the foundation for Israel to be who it would be as a nation going forward if Joseph responds the wrong way here the 12 tribes the whole move of Moses hundreds of years later never works the same way if Joseph does not choose love over hate kindness over revenge why forgiveness is a quote we must develop and maintain and maintain the capacity to forgive he was devoid of the power to forgive is the void of the power to love there's some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us when we discover this we are less prone to hate our enemies Dr Martin Luther King Jr So the few things about forgiveness I want to give you number one the 1st lesson is this one forgiveness takes strength. So what I've read about and I found interesting quote from someone a Mahatma Gandhi is a quote on forgiveness he says the we can never forgive forgiveness is the attribute of the strong it takes more so it takes more strength to forgive than it does to retaliate you see when you forgive you have to function from the higher parts of your being from the spiritual part of your being retaliation comes from the base of your being from the lower parts of you the sub school lesson last quarter had a great quote in the teacher's comments on forgiveness so forgiveness involves a conscious choice to give of feelings of resentment toward another person and consequently it also removes any right to seek revenge for what he or she has done Forgiveness does not require you to be the guilty party or imply that the other person deserves forgiveness rather forgiveness route out anger and bitterness from our own lives helps heal wounds and builds a basis for restoring relationships Forgiveness does not mean excusing wrong behavior or removing any consequences that might result from the behavior true forgiveness recognizes the seriousness of the offense watch this but it chooses a path of healing God forgave humans even though we were undeserving of his forgiveness but divine forgiveness did not undermine the seriousness of sin or remove all the consequences of sin indeed Jesus took the ultimate consequence of sin suffering death on our behalf and the light has a great quote. It is from the book testimony treasures page 602 it says the real greatness and nobility of the man is measured by the power of the feelings that he subdue. Mercy. Not by the power of the feelings that soup subdue him the strongest man is he who while sensitive to abuse will yet restrain passion and forgive his enemies like Oh I says The last sentence there she says such men are true heroes Peter said of the AS JESUS LORD how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him and if you don't Peter like Peter Peter it is interesting guy is kind of a comic relief of the Gospels if you read it right Thomas jumps in every now and again too but Peter definitely there's one place where I just cracks me up you know he said you could tell he was in the corner thinking how can I press them I'm going to impress Jesus I want to be vice president when he becomes king of Israel so he says oh you know because the Jewish tradition is you forgive 3 times that was the number so Peter jumps in as a. I'm a do it 7 times a more perfect number it's a bigger number it's 2 times what I will do you can see him smile an area 7 times Lord Jesus said unto him I say not on to the until 7 times but on to 70 times 7 in the Jewish economy that has a lot of weight it's a 7 times the 71 of them is a multiple of 10 really Jesus saying there's really no limit to how much you forgive I'm sure Peter walked away Wow I missed that one. But a 2nd thing about forgiveness is a physician and go back to the story I tell you Nestle of the young lady is there a few reasons why forgiveness is so important you get healthier relationships you can improve mental health less anxiety stress and hostility it lowers your blood pressure fewer symptoms of depression a stronger immune system. Improves heart health and improved self-esteem Forgiveness is good for your health so look at his study. In a new study the Journal of Health Psychology researchers analyzed the mental and physical health of 140 young adults as one might expect a correlation was found between high stress levels and more health problems but the study also indicated that in cases where people showed forgiveness of both themselves and others the connection between stress and mental illness practically disappeared the mind cannot heal if the heart has not forgiven so that study is saying so forgiveness takes that bad connection between stress and mental illness and makes it basically 0 incredible when God says that we should forgive him when he is a 70 times 7 it's interesting because what Jesus really saying is he'll he's saying he'll end the science is backing us up he'll is what Jesus saying the reason we have to authentically and legitimately forgive people and move on is because if we don't the person we're destroying is ourselves there's an enormous physical burden to be to being hurt and disappointed Carol Schwartz M.D. director of the Mood Disorders at the adult consultation clinic at the Johns Hopkins Hospital it is believed that chronic anger puts an individual into a mode of fight or flight if you get that resulting in numerous changes in heart rate blood pressure and the immune system those changes in turn increase the risk for conditions like depression heart disease and diabetes but it seems forgiveness can help to mitigate those stress levels so one of the great anti-stress techniques is literally to forgive why so what happens when you're not consciously to fight or flight you release adrenaline I would tell a story about being chased by a dog as a kid growing up dogs were a little cute things people carry around in handbags in California you know not enable people dogs to protect property. So you go messing around that dog and you are viewed as the enemy and the dogs are coming after you your body instantly but as we're fearfully and wonderfully made adrenalin ascent cortisol levels increase all of a sudden your heart rate increases your pupils dilate your respiratory rate goes up blood is shunted away from your digestive tract to your big muscles your dog is chasing you know worried about digesting your breakfast right now you need to make sure you don't get digested by the dog. Right blood is sent to your brain your your mental clarity increases your strength increases the problem is you don't forgive you live your life like a dog is chasing you all the time that person who harmed you if Joseph had not forgiven his brothers they would have been chasing him their whole life and your body the way God designed us we're designed to take stress on for a moment to overcome a challenge but then to go back down to normal that's called I'll stay says if you don't let go of the stress it's called allostatic load you carry a burden of stress cortisol cortisol releasing hormone a dread of adrenaline levels that will literally shorten your life when you forgive truly deeply forgive you to let go of all of that which would cause you physical health harm Matthew 612 Jesus prayed teaching the praises and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors for if you forgive men their trespasses you Heavenly Father will also forgive you but if you forgive not mend their trespasses neither will your father forgive your trespasses So the 3rd key thing is forgiveness is key to experiencing dogs love if you don't forgive you never get to experience God's love as Jesus said here in the Lord's Prayer and Amplified Bible it says it like this and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors letting go of both the wrong and the resentment. For if you forgive others their trespasses their reckless and willful sins your heavenly Father will also forgive you but if you do not forgive others nurturing your hurt and anger with the result that it interferes with your relationship with God then your father will not forgive your trespasses that you get that Amplified Bible I don't usually quote that in sermons but I like that line here it says if you hold all to it it interferes with your relationship with God Guess what because in a sense anger hatred animosity to hurt you can become an idol it can be what you constantly think about it can take all of your time it can be what you turn everything over to and rather than spending that energy getting to know God better you're been too busy spending that energy being bitter Luke 7 where for us into the loop 747 wherefore I say into the her sins which are many are forgiven for she loved the much but to whom little is forgiven the same what love the little god says listen there is a spiritual kind of like currency in forgiveness the more God forgives you the more you feel indebted to him because I look back on my life and all of foolishness I did all of the mistakes I made and when I was when I read of the love of God I realize how unworthy I am of His mercy and His grace it causes me to fall deeper and deeper in love with a God that he would even look at a wretch like me behold what manner of Love The Father has bestowed upon us that we should be called the Sons and Daughters of God. Own biological father didn't want me it blows my mind that the Father and Creator of the youth of earth loves me with an infinite love that is the power that comes with forgiveness Ellen White says in Christ object lesson page $251.00 she says we are not forgiven because we forgive but as we forgive the ground of our forgiveness is found in the unmerited love God by our But by the side of the ground of off again this is found in the unmerited love of God but by our attitude toward others we show whether we have made that love our own wherefore crisis with what judgment judge you shall be judged and with what measure ye me to be measured to you again Matthew 7 verse 2 just as Matthew 1823 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king is a long parable remember of the king I will read all of it to the king guy comes in it really shows the king the equivalent of maybe a 1000000 or $2000000.00 The guy comes in and begs for his life have mercy on me don't kill me and the king has mercy on him Matthew 1826 the servant therefore felt our worse of them saying Lord have patience with me I'll pay all the Lord of the servants as moved with compassion and loosed him so he forgave the guys all right I'm a forgive you millions of dollars worth of debt but the same servant went out and found one of his fellow servants which owed him $100.00 pence just a few dollars and he laid hands on him and took him by the throat saying pay me what you will and a fellow service felt on his feet and a sort of just the way he did the other guy's a saying Have patience with me I'll pay the all and he would not but went and cast them into prison so we should pay the debt so when his fellow servant saw this was done they were very sorry and came and told their lord all that was done that is Lord after all that all after that he had called them said unto them you wicked servant. I forgave you all that that millions of dollars because you desires me because you asked Shouldn't you have also had compassion on your fellow servant even as I had pity on you and as Lord was right and deliver him to the tormentors So we should pay all that that was Do unto Him Look what verse 35 says so like i was jesus so likewise shall my Heavenly Father do also unto you if you from your hearts if you from your hearts forgive not everyone his brother their trespasses church let me see if you know many of our local churches advantage organizations institutions of higher education even I hope that you are not functioning because there is a spirit of unforgiveness. You know how many churches split and let me say that we have learned when I have been is that I know study to back this up this all anecdotal I have learned that when a church breaks up over anger or resentment and differences that spirit follows them when they split and go and start new churches sometimes you've got to be able to forgive sometimes even to let people be who they are and stand back and wait till it carries itself out and I says this is this is from a letter 388 and 97 she says comfort your heart my brother by believing that the Lord wants you to be saved and that you are his child do not think that your that your mind must be in a certain state of feeling or else you are not accepted of God your faith must rely not on feeling but on the promises of God walk by faith and of the say of the Lord restoral case of the Lord and believe in His word believe or believe the Word of the Lord and walk by faith not by sight consecrate yourself a new To God be loyal and true to a thusly of the Lord and stand fast in the Liberty wherewith Christ does make you free you know a lot of us have challenges because we are were not understanding that God wants to set us free. You don't want to bound to our past or to our past pain so the 4th principle is this one request and confess James 516 confession falls one to another and pray for one another that she may be healed the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man available much Christ object lesson page 144 says one of Christ last commands to his disciples was love one another as I have loved you John 1334 do we obey this command or are we indulging look at this sharp un-Christ like traits of character if we have in any way grieved or wounded others it is our duty to confess our faults and seek for reconciliation look at all she says this is an essential preparation that we may come before God in faith to ask his blessing if you're holding resentments to get other people and you've not asked for forgiveness now want to confess where you've done wrong and ask them for forgiveness watches even if they don't give you forgiveness or if they don't want to forgive you you've got to say I'm sorry watch this if you don't it blocks blessings one of most important ones in the soul talk is this one you have to forgive yourself let me says and this is of prophetic and time value the need to forgive yourself what I mean by that is to let go when God has forgiven you for that means 313 but this one thing I do forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forth on to those things which are before. Ally says I discounts for the church page 353 she says the tempter stands by to accuse them as they stood by to resist just to the point of their filthy garments their defective characters he presents their weakness and folly their sins of ingratitude their own likeness to Christ which which has this honored their Redeemer endeavors to affright the soul with the thought that their case is hopeless that the stain of their defilement will never be washed away I want you to get this because sometimes we preach and messages we miss one very important point and we talk about Jacob's time of trouble and we talk about these things but let me say something at some point you have to let go and allow yourself to accept that God has forgiven you that's one of the reasons that righteousness is by faith righteousness by faith means that I actually believe and trust that when God says He is faithful and just to forgive me of my sins and a cleanse me of all unrighteousness righteousness by faces I believe him from sincere if I looked at them you could on your knees and you weep and cry with God over the failures that you had against them and you ask God for His forgiveness and sincerity God will wash away listen if it doesn't work then the blood doesn't work and there's no whole process of the blood doesn't work sometimes the admin is we really were hard on what we need to do let me say something if you're not quick to accept that God is a loving and forgiving God you will spend your time beating yourself up instead of serving him I believe if it gives In fact that's the reason I'm a Christian every other religion I can figure out a way to work myself into heaven that's the only Protestant Christianity offers righteousness by faith where is actually the it's actually on Christ's merits that I'm saved it's his word the righteousness that one day I plan to put on. Right that's why I'm a Christian I'm not to join any religion in the world and I could work my way into nerve on earth into paradise I mean I could work my way I could really reincarnated a whole bunch of times till I figure it out and get it right Christianity says you don't have to Christianity says you need to accept that the blood washes you clean and that a blood isn't just for external washing that if you get a blood transfusion he can watch you from the inside out so that you're not just for a given of sin you give him power over sin by the Blood of Jesus Christ you don't even have to sin anymore if you don't believe that you're in trouble in the last days look at Highlight finishes that statement she says speaking of saying he hopes are so destroy their faith that they will yield to his temptations turn from their allegiance to God Look at this last line and receive the mark of the beast has ever made the connection of receiving the mark of the beast with the feeling that you don't trust that God is actually forgiven you spirit prob this is a fact the 2 things are connected if you can't because it's the only beating yourself up you've got except listen trust that God forgive them people remember what you did wrong but God forgets we're told that God takes our sin and he cast them into the sea of forgetfulness and he remembers them no more but some of us want to get a D. I was a missionary in Guam and the Mariana Trench of the deepest point in the ocean man can't get to the bottom but you get that we can go to the but we don't have the tech not we can put a man on the moon we can get to the bottom of the ocean and that's why I believe God uses the analogy that you are saying is that the bottom of the ocean. Because you can't get that there were some of us still want to get deep sea diving boats out but all scuba gear and we don't swim around looking for all sin so we can feel sorry for ourselves no no no soldier in the Army of the Living God stand up in the power of what God has done for you move all I know you messed up in your teenage years you smoke stop you shouldn't smoke some of you you did stuff you shouldn't Did they said oh good you spent time in a no tell motel when you should know but guess what if you come to Christ quivering trembling believing accepting the sacrifice of Calvary that the blood of Jesus Christ washes that it cleanses even the most wicked of us. Magdalene was a prostitute yet Jesus forgave her of her sins challenge you to get to know that Jesus Jesus who forgives last line is this one says forgiven be made free Louis piecemealed says to forgive is to set a prisoner free and the skiff discover that the prisoner was you let me say this I challenge all of us as we spend time together this retreat and as we have time together as we can when you are in your devotional time talk to Jesus recognize the power of the sacrifice he made recognize that Jesus saves and I finish that woman in the beginning when she finally came to grips with the fact that her illness was less organic than it was emotional and spiritual when she began to focus not on herself her past or on those who are predators against her and she turned her eyes towards Christ A symptoms evaporated. Oh him says it this way turn your eyes upon Jesus look full in his wonderful face and the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and Grace let's pray Father God we thank you Lord for this opportunity Lori thank you that you are such a wonderful loving God I thank you Father God and even a wretch like me a sinner like me but the blood when applied works better than Clorox works better than all of the fabric softening downy you could put into a machine the blood of Jesus Christ still washes its still cleanses Father God Let us never forget the blood washes away sin because it is in knowing the price of the blood that we seek to live righteously for you help us Father God strengthen us Father God to forgive those who have hurt us to ask forgiveness from those we have hurt and forgive ourselves after you have shown us for. That prayer in Jesus is precious and holy name. The church say amen and this media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse or if you would like to listen to more sermon leave a Visit W W W audio verse or.


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