I'm not here to diminish anyone's pain or loss, and we can imagine that there are some very large losses from some very large offenses caused by some very messed up people or circumstances. And the time would fail us not to mention the many horrible offenses in world history and the people and forces behind them. Let's consider Pharaoh, Nero, Herod, Hitler, Cain, Stalin, Mussolini, and even Nineveh, from which came atrocities that are deserving of condemnation, and not to mention Adam himself who let it all in and all of us that are guilty by association at the very least. But let's take the worst of the worst..., let's say we could pick the top three, if we were to explore how far The Love and Grace of God could go, we would have to agree that even Hitler, Nero, Herod, Pharaoh, Stalin, and Caesar combined wouldn't be able to exhaust The Grace of God by Jesus Sacrifice and Resurrection. Jesus didn't say... "the whole world" for no reason, but was all inclusive. But we know that pride kept them from being able to see and accept Jesus offer..., but Saul of Tarsus even persecuted the early Church..., yet, Jesus saved Saul who became Paul etc..., and Jonah probably had very good reason to run the other way when God told Jonah to go to Nineveh and tell them about God, because Jonah knew what Nineveh was known for at the time. Lots and lots of casualties and victims were a result of the above with many many millions of victims and survivors that had to remember and be in pain the rest of their lives on earth. So i'm not here to diminish any of that or any of your pain or mine. Jesus IS Bigger though, and what it cost Him was bigger even if for a moment, costing Him everything, was worth more than all the payments from all of Creation for all of eternity even if we all paid forever, it still wouldn't be worth what Jesus gave up, and what He paid etc. So this is what we're talking about now. Is whether or not God's Grace is sufficient or not as temporary relief here on earth until we go to be with Him? Anyway, I can't choose for you all, I can only choose for me, and also I know what it looks like and feels like for others and myself when we yield our pain to Jesus as apposed to letting it stay in the way indefinitely. Also I've seen what it looks like when people hold their loses or the loss of loved ones hostage "against" God as if He did something wrong by giving them life even for awhile in this life. Anyway, it is not for us to judge God or even others. God knows what He is doing and what He allows. Consider Job. It was known by even Job that it was God that ultimately gave and took away etc..., The Good News, is that Jesus has enough for the worst and all the way down to the least worst etc. We all are in the mix, and probably best case, is that we would have gone down Adam and Eve's decision path if we had been them, and there's plenty of evidence that we all have the potential of being the worst if given the right circumstances, but we don't have to go there, but lets be clear, we can't very well include ourselves while excluding others based on the offense, rather than just let it all fall under All Sin and Let Jesus pick up the pieces as He wills, for He can see The Bigger Picture and we really can't, at least not here on earth.
Forgiveness brings the possibility of a beginning of or the re-beginning of relationship. Not Insignificant, but that's it. It doesn't keep going..., Basically, if it was just Salvation "from" Death and "from" The Lake of Fire, and "from" suffering..., then that would be back to reset, which only gets us to The Garden of Eden, and that would only get us to between Creation and the choice between Jesus The Tree of Life, and the Other Tree etc..., and we would all find a way to mess that up..., but Jesus went further...,
God meets us for the first time (at least first time for us), He already knows everything, and yet He comes with Forgiveness Extended out First Thing. So it's like a pre-step before the first step can even begin.
Even when we meet someone for the first time, we are kind of like forgiving all of their past, pending further investigation. So even at the first meeting, we are either forgiving what we don't even know or are unaware of, or we're not forgiving what we don't even know or may be just imagining. And yet..., even in the Church, Forgiveness is often misused or mis-characterized. So much of the talk about and practice of "forgiveness" is self focused, or done in a way as to focus on what's not happening, rather than the possibilities etc. And even worse, it can actually be selfish and self centered if the goal is to leave ourselves weight free or debt free by forgiving another. These don't seem like the best ways to bring it up. Certainly not to focus on the offense, which is often what the focus is on rather than on just Jesus. This was Jonah's problem, and that isn't where he ended up in the end we hope, but we hope that Jonah took Jesus Grace, otherwise Nineveh would have gotten a bigger portion of their Redeemer than Jonah did. But since Jonah probably wrote The Book of Jonah, we hope that he let Jesus turn the lights on for him too. Hopefully Jonah was staring at Jesus at the end and not at Nineveh or the Ninevites.
Love Has The Ability to Love anyway, and Love can't be shut down or diminished..., and if it can be shut down or diminished, then it's not Love Perfected or Perfect Love yet. But don't get too hung up on that. Suffice to say that Jesus does that perfectly, and over time He makes us better at displaying it. Or maybe we get better at staying out of His way and letting Him be God.
And I'm not saying that it's always appropriate to reestablish relationship after forgiveness is extended, but for the sake of argument, lets look at what Love can do if so inclined. Love is able to see the relationship restored even if the other side never comes back to the table. Or we could even say that Love has the ability to see or have faith and hope and the ability to extend itself as if the relationship was already restored even if the relationship never is. That's pretty amazing, and certainly that's what God has done, especially since He IS All Knowing, All Powerful, All Loving, All Amazing! And of course I'm not suggesting that it's always appropriate to act as if the other person will reconcile, especially if the other side has made it clear that no such action(s) is welcomed, But when it's fueled by Real Love from God, then Love knows when to hold back and not be on display etc. Love can put it's own desires on hold or hidden for the sake of another if it's not time or if that time never comes etc. That understanding is kind of only known with experience inside of Real Love, where Love is Really Happening and the other side wants nothing to do with that Real Love. And Jesus is The All Time Champion of being able to not wake Love before it's time. He holds back a ton until we are ready to receive Him. And even then He doesn't jump in and blow us completely away, but He is Perfect Gentleman.
And let's face it, it's only really good news if God is The One really doing it, not when we do it, because we know by experience that when we do it, it has a way of springing back, but when God does a thing, it stays done or is progressively becoming done for real etc.
Freedom is already the byproduct of God Forgiving us when we receive His Forgiveness by Grace through Faith in Jesus Alone, Jesus Who Is Love IS Able to run ahead and Forgive Ahead of the Offense(s), Of which Love Gives Forgiveness it's Ability. And that's how you can tell if it's real forgiveness from Love or not, because real forgiveness is born out of Love or covered in Love. But the "forgiveness" that's self generated really doesn't forgive anyone and doesn't really set us free who are doing the forgiving, especially as it focuses on the offense, but far easier to accept Love from God. And His Love focuses on God Himself and we are able to receive needed Grace for the offense, Grace for the offender, and everyone else too. And also God can cause Greater Good and Greater Fruit by His Power and Love than could have happened if the offense had never happened etc..., He kind of one ups anything the enemy does, but with God, He like Ten-Ups stuff. Hopefully you are familiar with The God we are talking about. Job knew This God, and so did Paul.
When you're praying for the other party at your own expense rather than complaining about them, when you're Loving the offender more than you're hating the offense, when you're letting God in more than you're regretting what you've lost, then Grace is likely come in to be your sufficiency, and that's usually a pretty good sign that you have had some experience with God's Grace and Forgiveness in such a way that you know you didn't change yourself, and in fact you had tried for a long time, and God had to do it for you and in you all by Himself, and you had get to the point where you gave it to Him, you yielded and He gave you more Grace, and then more. That's when we really get the message, when we realize this for all the other people too, that they can't fix themselves either, and that they too need to let God do it for them just like He did for us. But it's not a forced thing. not by us and not by God. That's when Love has to kick in, because we can't make any positive changes with force, but by Love, and that can take a long time, that's why Love Suffers Long..., because it has the ability to, whereas our flesh screams and runs when pain is realized. But Love Loves them "Through" the mess. That's when we realize that we can't change them any more than we could change ourselves, and so we depend more on God for them just like we had to learn to depend on God for ourselves and our own development. So anyway, it's God Who Works in us to Will and To Do for His Good Pleasure. So sometimes it takes a long time for God to get to us that when we let Him take us through that process, that we're far more satisfied and things work out a whole lot better when we leave Him in charge and we stop trying to take the wheel. Works out better for us and for everyone else too.
So when God gets a hold of us and gets to us His forgiveness, since it didn't come from us then it can have it's perfect work in and through our lives and that kind of Love moves us and moves others in ways that simply choices or human forgiveness would not be able to move. God's Love and Forgiveness is by His Spirit and is an act or function of God, and flows from or out of Love.
Real Forgiveness is born out of Love, and is a byproduct of God Loving us in such a way that we have let Him in, and He is making Himself at Home, (in a good way). So when God said that if we don't forgive others, He won't forgive us, that really means that we haven't really received His forgiveness yet to the extent that Grace is involved as a Free Gift of God. So if we're having trouble forgiving others or ourselves, that usually means that we're barking up the wrong tree, because we're trying to do in our flesh by our own choices in our own strength by the Law, something that is Spiritual and comes from The Spirit of God to us and through us. So the problem of un-forgiveness is about the same as unbelief, the self will trying to be God instead of letting God be God. And is most likely that we see ourselves or others as somehow "earning" something or trying to "earn" something from God and that's impossible. Or maybe it's because of justifying self rather than letting Jesus justify us by Himself. These only frustrate the Grace of God and puts that Grace at arms length rather than it taking over the space. And keeps Grace from running the race because we keep pushing Grace away trying to run the race ourselves in our own strength. Ask Paul about how cool it is to just let Grace run the race. Paul knew he didn't deserve anything good from God. So it is with all of us. The Only Exception is Jesus Who didn't deserve anything deserving of what He got and what was given up by Him, yet He became sin for all of us, so that we could have all His Life in exchange. So when we let Him (Jesus) in, He begins to set some things right on the inside and then as He does that more and more, we find that the good stuff starts to flow more and more and as a consequence, we begin to see that less and less thought is going into making things happen because The Holy Spirit is continuing to focus our eyes on Jesus and we begin to realize that He's The Amazing One, and that He couldn't leave us the way we used to be, all dressed in grave clothes and having our own coverings which were rags and stained bloody at that. And over time we begin to notice that we're not who we used to be, but not of ourselves, we're finally changing for the better..., because of Jesus inside..., Then we realize there's hope for anyone and everyone else because He Lives. And when we accept Jesus Offer, we get everything, Forgiveness, Salvation "From" you know what, as well as Salvation "To" Heaven and "with" Jesus Forever.