According to Jeremiah 34:15, the acceptable year of our Lord, the year of Jubilee was a year when liberty was proclaimed “every man to his neighbor. All dept was forgiven. All land was restored and every one who had been sold into servitude because of debt were released. All bondage that held people captive was null and void and people were to be set free. The sad part is that this was the fast that Israel refused to keep.
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? (Isaiah 58:6)
The Lord’s fast is a celebration of freedom in which bonds are loosed, heavy burdens lifted and the oppressed set free. It is not enough for the bonds to be broken, every yoke must be broken also and every means of external control and manipulation must be put away with if people are to experience the freedom that Christ brings.
Freedom starts or finishes with forgiveness. Without forgiveness there is no freedom. Forgiveness is more than a pardon...true forgiveness will break the yoke of bondage and let the oppressed go free. Forgiveness sets people free from the expectations of the controllers manipulations.
Unforgivers have an acute sense of unwarranted and unbiblical justice, they feel they have the right to condemn and judge the offender to an eternity of the damned.
To forgive as Jesus forgives is to let the guilty go free and actively bringing them into a relationship with God. Forgiveness is not about justice or condemnation...it is about mercy trumping over judgement and condemnation.
Without forgiving as Jesus forgives you will not love as Jesus loves nor will you offer grace as Jesus offers grace.
“Forgive others as Jesus has forgiven you.”