Lesson 5 - Principle 8

  

I MAKE A LIST OF ALL PERSONS I HAVE HARMED AND BECOME WILLING AND READY TO MAKE AMENDS WITH THEM WHEN GOD GIVES ME THE OPPORTUNITY TO DO SO.

First, I make a list of people that God has revealed to me by doing the previous principles. Second, I “become willing and ready” to make amends. This is an example of my faith at work by its manifestation in my will to make amends despite my fears of the unknown. This work of love for God that is in my heart and will is manifest through my obedience to Him, rather than a feeling or desire to do so.

While compiling my list, I should keep in mind those I have harmed by “word and deed” and by “sins of omission.” I need to ask God to help me to recognize my unforgiveness and bitterness since these are sins, and these have been the cause of trouble and tribulation in my life. I also need to list those who have hurt and harmed me, as they need forgiveness from my heart. I understand that in some of these areas there may still be a great deal of pain, but God desires for me to trust Him so that He can heal me and bring resolution and reconciliation to all areas in my life.

Proverbs 14:9 Fools mock at sin, but among the upright there is favor. (NKJV) Fools mock at making amends for sin, but goodwill is found among the upright. (NIV)

The word fool means one who despises wisdom, one who mocks when guilty, one who is quarrelsome, one who is licentious (OLB). Licentious is being lawless or immoral; it is going beyond customary or proper bounds or limits. It is disregarding rules. This type of person mocks (to be inflated, talk arrogantly, scoff, act as a scorner, to deride (OLB)).

Sin: The fool ridicules the meaning of sin. Sin means to offend, be guilty, trespass, to do wrong, commit an offense, do injury, to be or become guilty, to be held guilty, to be incriminated, to suffer punishment, to declare guilty, to be desolate, and to acknowledge offense (OLB).

The cause of this attitude and mindset is arrogance. Arrogance is defined in the scriptures in Revelation 3:17, “Because you say, `I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing' —and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.” This truth is also spelled out in 1 Corinthians 8:1-2, 10:1, “Knowledge puffs up, but love edifies. And if anyone thinks that he knows anything, he knows nothing yet as he ought to know…. Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.”

As we begin to practice these principles and observe these truths, the reasons why we were the way we were will become clear. You’ll notice that sin is not reserved to just the mental area or our thinking. It also involves our words and our actions. It affects the social, legal, spiritual, and health areas. You see, sin affects our whole life. We now know that we cannot mock the evidence of sin and the works that it has produced and promoted in our lives. The NIV translates the desire to make amends as “good will.”