The Power of Living Altogether Forgiven
July 23, 2017
This is the continuation of a series of Podcasts started in Episode #553.
Martha’s new book, Altogether Forgiven, has provoked great warfare but it’s already bearing fruit. There’s so much that we need to know about forgiveness!
(Jennifer) Well, I was also thinking, John, when you were talking, it’s so funny that you said exactly what I wanted to say about forgiveness, because that’s how I feel about everything that Martha sent for me to read is that I thought I had a pretty good handle on forgiveness. I’m not saying I thought I was an expert, but if somebody had said, you know, what’s forgiveness and all that good stuff, I would have felt pretty comfortable that I could have answered that and pointed to experiences in my life. And that’s legitimate, that’s true. But considering the depths and frequency that forgiveness is addressed in the scriptures, you would think there would be reams and reams of stuff written about it and revelation shared. And I have been really, really surprised at how little there is out there that’s actually, specifically on the issue of forgiveness, being forgiven, living forgiven, forgiving, what it means to forgive, you know. I’ve read the scripture 70 times 7 – I’m going to use the shorthand, because I know everybody knows what I’m talking about – many, many times. But He’s still bringing new revelation of that scripture and opening up new avenues where it’s applicable in my life, that I didn’t see before. You know, nothing in the scriptures is one-dimensional. Nothing is one and done. And that’s the beauty of it and the adventure of it. But this book and what He’s giving you, Martha, is just, I mean, it’s life. It’s going to be life from page one to the end. There’s just no question. And it’s so far reaching, I think, forgiveness and the lack thereof.
(Martha) I don’t tell this in the book, just wasn’t led to tell it. But I guess I was in my mid-thirties and a friend of mine confronted me about, “You haven’t forgiven this situation.” And I said, “I have said it.” She said, “I don’t care if you’ve said it, you haven’t forgiven.” And I began to uncover, the Lord began to show me, because I asked Him to, “Show me my bitterness,” and He did, and it was a deep well, a deep, black well. And I said to Him back then, what? 40 years ago? “I want you to make me an expert on forgiveness, because I had been an expert on bitterness.” And so, I began to take hold of every scripture that’s about forgiveness. And all these years and even lately I’ve had to go back and forgive something and go through the way you do it. And so, it’s so encouraging to me what you’re saying, because it means He answered my prayer. And you started to say it’s so crucial, Jennifer. It’s life and death. It’s your spiritual life and death. And one of the things that I, I think I addressed it a little bit, but I’m shocked at how cavalier many Christians are, and even sincere Christians are about forgiveness. It’s like you don’t have to deal with that. “I don’t want to deal with that, so I won’t.” But to me, to see it in the Word like it is presented, it’s critical. It’s a life and death matter literally and figuratively, spiritually and physically, because they say that most of our diseases, 90% of our diseases are simply the poison released in the body from bitterness, that there’s literally… You poison yourself with bitterness. So, it’s, for me it’s extremely life and death.
(Carole) I was just going to say, Martha, when Jen was talking, and you pretty much just said it. It has made me extremely aware of the crisis of forgiving. It is, I feel like it is the life crisis for all of us. And there are offenses coming out of every direction in life. But those offenses, if they’re not dealt with, it is what you just said. It’s a life and death crisis. And I think that’s the subtlety of Satan too, is to somehow lessen the pang of it, lessen the value and the sacredness of it. But through your book, it is just making me see everything differently, and that it truly is a crisis in my life to have Him or not have Him.
(John) And here’s another thing. People may think that they know how to forgive, because it’s become such a common thing that they believe they are forgiving, and they’re not. They believe that, you know, that that wave of the hand, that “Oh, well, I’m just going to forget it,” or “Oh, that’s ok. It’s ok, no problem,” that that’s forgiveness. Literally, I’m telling you, it has exploded, exploded it in my head what the purpose of forgiveness is and what the outcome of forgiveness is, and what the… I mean, my understanding of forgiveness is totally changed. That one thing that you came down and read to me, I was like, “Wow!” The purpose of it is so much bigger than I ever thought. It’s not just so that, you know, it’ll go well with my life. No. It’s not so that men will be at peace with me. No. It’s not so that I don’t have physical ailments because of the bitterness in my body. No. It’s all of that, but it’s so much more. And it literally exploded my view of it, what you said. And that’s just one chapter. That was just one of the chapters that you came down, and you lit my head. Poof! It was on fire. It was like, “Wow! That’s the whole point of forgiveness? You’re kidding me!”
(Martha) I’ll never forget it, how you reacted, because you went straight up like into another realm. And you saw a vista that you had never seen before. It blew you away, but it also took you to you to a great deal of joy and bliss.
(John) Oh, absolutely! Yes, absolutely!
(Martha) It wasn’t that you were condemned at all.
(John) No, no, no.
(Martha) It was that you were set free.
(John) No, no, no. You gave me a hope and a joy and an excitement about it. It’s like whatever it is that I need to forgive. It was just that nothing is worth it to miss what’s on the other side.
(Martha) That’s what He’s giving me: the other side, the fruit of forgiveness and the result and the yeah. That’s what He’s giving me.
(John) And you can, you get… It’s amazing. You connected it with something that’s just so a part of my heart. And you just, you just made all the connections between the forgiving and the forgiveness and being forgiven. You’ve made all the connections. And it brought… I’m passionate about it. You gave me passion for something that, you know, can be passed off as, “Oh, yeah, yeah, who doesn’t know about forgiveness? Who doesn’t know about forgiveness. Everybody knows about forgiveness. You just forgive. Just shut up and forgive.” Tell me that’s not what they do, right?
(Carole) Or, “I’ve already dealt with that.”
(John) “Oh, I’ve already dealt with that.” Exactly, Carole. Exactly.
(Carole) “Yeah, I cried, I cried. I dealt with that a long, long time ago.” But you know what? As we’ve had the privilege to read this, and as you’re talking, John, because it just gets me all ignited again too. The anointing is so powerful, the anointing for the impartation of that revelation and that life is… I don’t know. I can’t even think of a really good word to describe it. It’s just, it takes you away. It takes you up. It grabs you and takes you into the heavenly realm. Doesn’t it?
(John) It did. It absolutely did.
(Martha) Lori Thomas wrote this wonderful thing, and she didn’t know – I should probably tell this on the video. Ok, I’ll save it. When you and Jen and Lori and whoever else I sent the file to, all of you ladies wept. And you were just kind of blown away and wept.
(Jennifer) That’s a very genteel way of describing what actually happened. It was actually a lot more messy than that. Um, ok, but here’s something I also want to say, because I think most of the people that listen to the podcasts are probably also subscribed to the devotion. So, I would think that they would, you know, be aware of The Mystery of Discipleship. We just finished up that series only a couple of weeks ago. But what I love about having this in print form – and we’re still going to have it available for free on ReadMK for people, but we have had, you know, we had a lot of requests from people who really wanted it to be in a print copy that they could literally hold in their hands and have and be able to navigate through it very quickly and not have to click page to page sort of thing. But something about both Altogether Forgiven, the book on forgiveness and The Mystery of Discipleship, the devotional—they’re both so foundational. They are, they’re both kind of these cornerstone issues. And yet, they’re both incredibly high at the same time. Somehow in that it’s one of these things where if somebody said, “Well, would you give it a to mature Christian or to a new believer?” I would say, “Yes.” (Laughs) You know, because they work on so many different levels. And, you know, this isn’t my first go round with devotionals, and I have now spent weeks reading and re-reading and pouring over them as I’m formatting and editing and all the rest of that. And so, I’ve been immersed. And that’s even counting, you know, all the times previously when I’ve, you know, been working on them to put them online. And when I, you know, went through them indepth to assemble them as their own series, you know, from the original “Manna in the Morning,” that Martha sent out back in 2003-2004. Good gravy, it’s like fifteen years ago. But in spite of that I would still find myself, even if it was the sixth time I had read it that day going through it, I would find myself stopping and actually reading it. I would find it almost impossible just to skim through it the way I needed to in a very detached manner, to simply look for mistakes that I’d made or, you know, errors and things like that. Because the anointing on it is, it’s so strong. It’s just so strong. And I think that that might be, you know, because these are two things where Jesus’ heart really is. You know, the Cross is so central in Christianity, and it’s so central in forgiveness. And most of what you’re writing now, Martha, is so high in that respect in that it’s really beyond not just what I thought I knew, but what I imagined I could know about it, if that makes any sense, you know, which the Lord always does. (Laughs) He loves blowing me out of my own pool. (Laughs) And thank You for doing it, Lord! But that’s, you know, for both and for discipleship, I mean, that was His final… You know, that was the final responsibility He dished out to the men He spent more time with than any other human beings while He was here on this earth walking, was that they go and make disciples. And, you know, I go through the series, and I’ve gone through it so many times now, and yet I feel like in a very real way I’ve still only scratched the surface in terms of what the Spirit is able to reveal to me at this time, you know, in that. And I’m not surprised at the warfare, but I also, I am so excited for people to have this in their hands and to have that experience with Him reading it, you know? I just, I just think it’s Life, capital L.
Martha’s new book, Altogether Forgiven, has provoked great warfare but it’s already bearing fruit. There’s so much that we need to know about the subject of forgiveness and so little that we actually do. It makes every battle worth fighting!