Dr. Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965) once wrote, “Do not let Sunday be taken from you; if your soul has no Sunday, it becomes an orphan.” Schweitzer was many things besides physician, missionary, hospital builder, philosopher and Nobel Prize winner. He was a preacher, prominent organist, WWI POW, and a theologian. As a theologian, he said, ‘It is not necessary to Jesus that we understand all the theory behind his crucifixion and our forgiveness, if we believe in his death.” He added, “If a difficulty arises in regard to Holy Scripture and we cannot solve it, we must just leave it alone. We do not have to completely understand all of that.” So when a trained theologian, with an estimated IQ between 160 and 180, implies he does not understand some of the Bible, we should not be embarrassed when there are parts of the Bible we do not understand.

But, Dr. Schweitzer preached, “We should understand the doctrine of Jesus on forgiveness.” He said that doctrine is, “You shall be pardoned if you pardon,” and Jesus recalls it to us every time we pray his prayer: “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us,” (Matthew 6:12). Schweitzer wrote, “If we do not forgive everyone, we will be acting as if we are not guilty in the same ways,” and “We must forgive quietly and unostentatiously.” In general, he said “We will not succeed in forgiving fully, be if we really try to live by that doctrine of Jesus, it will be a triumph for our soul.”

Proverbs 3:5 tells us, ”Trust in the Lord with all our heart, and do not rely on our own understanding.” So, it is that trust and faith in the Lord, not our understanding, that convinces us we are forgiven. All thanks be to God.

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