Grace x2 Marriage Conference [Part 7]
By Alan Wright — July 27, 2018
Are you ready for some good news?
You can forgive. Yes. By God’s grace you can forgive.
Today’s Text: “See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled; that no one is sexually immoral or unholy like Esau, who sold his birthright for a single meal.” (Hebrews 12:15–16, ESV)
We’re airing a unique radio broadcast series this week. The messages are edited from a marriage conference that my wife and I led called “Grace X 2.” Today, we are discovering keys to grace in relationships by studying the timeless stories of Jacob and Esau.
After Jacob stole his brother’s blessing by lying to their father (see Genesis 27:1-40), Esau hated Jacob and wanted to kill him. When their mother, Rebekah, learned of Esau’s murderous intent, she warned Jacob, but her words were strange: “Behold, your brother Esau comforts himself about you by planning to kill you. Now therefore, my son, obey my voice. Arise, flee to Laban my brother in Haran” (Genesis 27:42–43, ESV).
Esau comforted himself with the thought of killing his brother? What could possibly be comforting about the contemplation of murder? Esau’s bitterness appealed to his fleshly appetite. The sin nature lies to us: “Take revenge, you’ll feel better.” It’s really no different than any other sort of fleshly desire – lust, greed, gluttony – they’re all just deep deceptions aimed at the carnal nature.
But life in the grace of God runs completely contrary to the appetite of the flesh. The flesh loves law, condemnation, and revenge. Grace, though, grasps a much higher power. The means by which God saved you, set you free, and made you an heir with Christ is the grace of forgiveness. There is no other way to life.
If you want an abundant marriage (or any other relationship), forgiveness must be at the center. You can learn how to discover and eradicate bitter root judgments. You can forgive as God has forgiven you. And that’s the Gospel!