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Who Can Forgive Sins

The idea in John 20:19-23 of the apostles having in some way the power to forgive the sins of others has at times been taken to mean that after Martin Luther (whose power was taken away) none of the pastors has had such a power.

Ideas? Please give as complete a reason as possible

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Response to John 20:19-23 who can forgive sin? Only God can forgive sins: Jeremiah 36:3, 2 Chronicles 7:14, Mark 2:7. Jesus was telling His disciples that when someone repents of their sin when the Gospel is preached we as believers can tell that person that they were forgiven of their sins because that is what Jesus said in Matt 9:2 and 5. Mark 2:5 and 9. Mark 3:28. Mark 4:12. Luke 5:23. Luke 7:47 and 48.
---Patricia on 9/3/12


//---Chria9396 on 5/15/12

Wow!
---aka on 5/15/12//

I second that Wow!

Amen Chria!
---char on 5/26/12


Mark_V.:

I suspect that what he means is this:

1) Jesus gave his Apostles the authority to forgive sins
2) The Roman Catholic church still claims this authority for its priests
3) Martin Luther was originally a Catholic priest
4) Protestant pastors do not claim this authority

Therefore, Martin Luther had this power earlier, but not later - hence, he must have lost it somehow.
---StrongAxe on 5/19/12


Peter, I have the same question as Strongaxe. What power did Luther lose? And what power did the pastors lose? Are you saying they had some kind of power themselves? Are you thinking of forgiving sins or other kinds of power?
---Mark_V. on 5/19/12


Peter:

I'm not sure what you meant by Martin Luther (whose power was taken away)

Who took the power away from Martin Luther, and when?
---StrongAxe on 5/18/12




Ruben, all the "us" you mentioned are believers only. He did not reconcile every individual who has lived. Because if a person is reconcile to God, he is headed for heaven, and we know not all individuals who ever lived and that live now are going to heaven.
---Mark_V. on 5/18/12


Peter, Christ is speaking of is actually church discipline. Another example of church discipline is found in I Cor 5:1-5, and 2nd Cor 2:7.
Church should excise discipline. Church discipline is a mark of the true church. Churches not exercising discipline are apostate.
---trey on 5/17/12


Eloy:

Cluny is appearing deliberately foolish as a satire of your own foolishness - hopefully so that you would recognize your own foolishness for what it is.

However, in all the years I have seen you on these blogs, I can't ever remember you eve once admit being wrong or making a mistake. On the contrary, you constantly claim perfection, refuse correction, and accuse anyone who disagrees with you of being unsaved, full of darkness, etc.

ALL Christians should be willing to accept correction and reproof. Even Peter was reproved by both Jesus and Paul. Since you don't, you must consider yourself even more holy and perfect than Peter.
---StrongAxe on 5/15/12


---Chria9396 on 5/15/12

Wow!
---aka on 5/15/12


Now when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such power to men"
---Mark_V. on 5/15/12


Mark,

Who are these men that the people marveled and glorified God ?

Saint Paul tell us :

" All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation , that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. So we are ambassadors for Christ , God making his appeal through us . We beseech you on behalf of Christ , be reconciled to God "( 2 Cor 5:17-20)
---Ruben on 5/15/12




srongax, I reiterate that what I posted to the other antiChristian: "frankly, I have zero care as to why youM are foolish."
---Eloy on 5/15/12


Forgiveness,who can fully fathom?It is from God, we have no ability ourselves to do. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is NO VARIABLENESS, NEITHER SHADOW OF TURNING. Jesus, the cross. Forgiveness, what Jesus did/does/ can it be separated from His love? When we forgive, we acknowledge the Lord who enables, it's above and beyond the natural realm. Whether one deserves it or not, our heart attitude ought to be one of forgiveness, willing to extend, whether (its) accepted or not. In hope that one is reconciled to the Father.
Forgiveness does not negate acknowledging sin, as some might suppose, otherwise why would it be offered? Love your enemies, as Christ has us.
---Chria9396 on 5/15/12


Ruben, Jesus as a man was till God. Do not separate Him from His deity. He could forgive sins because He is God who forgives sins. In (v. 4) though the Lord Jesus humbled Himself (Phil. 2:4-8) and set aside the independed use of His divine prerogatives in carnation (John 5:30) He was still fully God and therefore Omniscient (Mark 13:32: Luke 2:52). When the people saw this they said,
"Now when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such power to men"
Those people at first concluded Jesus blasphemes (v. 3) then when they saw the miracles they concluded just like you, that now man could forgive sins, they didn't conclude He was God. You concluded what they did.
---Mark_V. on 5/15/12


Eloy:

Perhaps you haven't noticed that all this time, Cluny uses "youm" (rather than the correct "you") ONLY when replying to you. This is a very deliberate grammatical error, a satire on your deliberate, consistent, and grammatically incorrect use of "whom" (rather than the correct "who") in the objective case.

Spelling errors and grammar errors (and even minor errors in fact) on blogs are nothing to make a big issue over - UNLESS the person who makes such errors insists that they are not errors, and that he is right, and everyone else is wrong.
---StrongAxe on 5/14/12


but it is God who forgives the sins .
---Mark_V. on 5/11/12

Mark,

How did Jesus mandate on having our sins forgiven? scripures tells us:

"But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins"( Mt 9:6)

Here as a Man he has authorithy to forgive sins.

" they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men."(MT 9:8)

Which Men has authorithy ?

"Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you." (Jhn 20:21)

"Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them, and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained."(JHN 20:23)







---Ruben on 5/14/12


cluny, frankly, I have zero care as to why youM are foolish.
---Eloy on 5/14/12


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\\cluny, YouM a silly little man.
---Eloy on 5/13/12\\

Apparently, youm don't get why I say "youm" to youm.

Yes. I'm a silly fool for Christ!

Whose silly fool are youm?

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/14/12


obviously God wants us to forgive those who SIN AGAINST US..no we cannot "forgive others' sins" meaning that forgiveness gives them passage into the kingdom of heaven...when you r referring to the forgiveness of your sins (and entering the kingdom..) that was done by Jesus' mission of being our Savior and sacrificing his life for us. The Spirit within him is in those who believe and should represent Him accurately. If you sin as a believer repent/ pray to God the Father through The Son...do not call any man 'Father' and confess your sins to them.
---Jesusfreak on 5/13/12


cluny, YouM a silly little man.
---Eloy on 5/13/12


\\It is plain here that some posters need more than just "bi-focals".
---Eloy on 5/12/12\\

Quite true, Eloy.

Youm need to be Christianed and delivered.

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/13/12


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Forgiveness of sins is between you and God. It is something that should have an intensity to it. others can sit in prayer with you but I believe it has to come from you to God.
Its part of your relationship with God.
---chris on 5/13/12


It is plain here that some posters need more than just "bi-focals".
---Eloy on 5/12/12


\\The English word "priest" comes from the Greek word PRESBYETEROS through the middle form "prester."\\

I forgot to mention that PRESBYTEROS means "old man" or "elder," as in the word "presbyopia," meaning you need bi-focals.

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/12/12


Wrong again, Eloy, as in everything youm say.

The English word "priest" comes from the Greek word PRESBYETEROS through the middle form "prester."

Compare other languages: "pretre", "presbytero", and the like.

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/12/12


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Ruben, We know that the priest is not the same as the elders, because the scripture shows a distinction between the two in Mark 15:1. The pastor gives the sermon, and he is the one whom leads and preaches from the pulpit delivering the word from the Holy Bible to the receiving congregation. And the elders are the older men in the church whom help individuals in praying in and with the Holy Spirit to come over the persons for their healing and restoration and sanctification. Please Read- I Corinthians 12:28-31+ Ephesians 4:11,12.
---Eloy on 5/12/12


Ruben, what eloy says is not truth at all. No one has the power to administer the Holy Spirit to anyone. For no person has the power to move God where ever they want. Just not true at all, shear nonsense. Those are teachings from the Word of faith teachers. No person can give you tongues, no where are we told to go against the demons. That is not what we are called to do. I have to expose those statements, for they do not come from the Bible. We do have the full armor of God, to protect ourselves, but not to go after demons. What they are doing is giving younger people wrong directions.
---Mark_V. on 5/12/12


Ruben, "Elder" is not "Priest" in the sense that he is the leader of the church, because the Pastor (also called, the Reverand or the Minister) is the leader of the Christian church, and the elders are merely the older men in the church. "Elders" in the Christian church means "Olders". These are older men in the church whom have the Holy Spirit and are able to administer the Holy Spirit to individuals in the congregstion, as for healing and in casting out of demons. And also being an elder, they have the wisdom to discern between good and bad spirits, and are able to give sound directions to the "youngers" in the church.
---Eloy on 5/11/12


Scripture reads that when you go to church to serve, and you recall that you have an offense with another person, then leave your offering there at the altar and go quickly to make amends with the person that you have an offense with,
---Eloy on 5/10/12

Eloy,

Yes we are to forgive one another, but no where does it say we are to confess uur sins to every believer we can find! In fact in James 5 :14-18 it reads " Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders( Priest) of the church, and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him...Therefore, Confess your sins one to another"

Therefore is referring to the men he was writing about in v 14-15!
---Ruben on 5/11/12


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Ruben, concerning prayer, all born again "Christians have access to God by One Mediator, Jesus Christ." The New Testament does not tell us to go through another. In the Old Testament priest were the types of the coming Christ. The people were been prepared through the types of the Coming Christ. In the RCC there is many mediators, Mary, the saints, priest, and they conclude they are forgiven by them, but it is God who forgives the sins against Him. I told you a long time ago that the RCC had replaced or abandoned Jesus Christ in almost all its traditions. But you did not believe me. Read what Mark E. said concerning those who sin against you. He did a good job with his answer.
---Mark_V. on 5/11/12


Everyone has their own direct link to Christ. It is called prayer.
Therefore we are able to seek the forgiveness of our sins direct.
This is direct association of your soul with our Lord.
When you seek forgiveness through another, its dis-associated. Unless it was they who you affronted. You have placed someone between you and God
Most clergy will pray with you that your sins be forgiven and ask God's forgiveness with you.
Yet it still has to come from you to God direct. With true sincerity and remorse.


---chris on 5/10/12


The Bible itself is one of the Traditions handed down by the church to us. The Bible is a product of the church's experience, and was canonized by the bishops early on.
---Catholicus on 5/10/12


Ruben, you ask,

"So why do you have authorithy over those who don't go by tradition?"

I follow the authority of God's Word.
---Mark_V. on 5/10/12

Mark,

I did not make myself clear!

What I want to know is this:

Why is your authorithy on the Word of God superior over all of us here, when it comes to scripture verses we disagree with you on?
---Ruben on 5/10/12


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Ruben, I know that you are catholic and rely upon your priest for atonement, but Christians do not. We rely upon Jesus and his commandments. I already posted that we have full authority to forgive another person whom has personally offended us. But any sins that another person does against somebody else or does against God, that guilty one needs to personally repent to the one that they sinned against, whether it be the person or/and God. Scripture reads that when you go to church to serve, and you recall that you have an offense with another person, then leave your offering there at the altar and go quickly to make amends with the person that you have an offense with, then afterward return back to church and offer your offering.
---Eloy on 5/10/12


I think we have missed the meaning of John 20:19-23.

If we look at Matt 18:18 we see Jesus saying a similar phrase, but this time using the word "bind".

But the context of that verse is contained in the question asked by Peter:

Matt 18:21 "Then Peter came and said to Him, Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?

It is only when I am sinned against that I have the power of forgiveness. I have the ability to forgive the person and restore their relationship with me. But only if the person acknowledges their sin against me. In the same way we confess sin to God.

Any other sin, not committed against me, is sin against God and only God can forgive that.
---Mark_Eaton on 5/10/12


And forgiveness is administered by all Christians today, and not only limited to the leaders of the church. And God's extended ministry of forgiving by all Christians, is commanded and comissioned and expected by God.
---Eloy on 5/10/12

Eloy,

How can a Christian forgive another Chritian who commited the sin of masterbation, fornication, aduterly? How in the world can a Christian tell that believer ' your sins are forgiven'?
---Ruben on 5/10/12


Ruben, you ask,

"So why do you have authorithy over those who don't go by tradition?"

I follow the authority of God's Word. I do not follow the authority of man's traditions because they are sinful. We do have a choice. You chose the RCC, probably because you family was Catholic. You didn't choose Islam, or E.G, White or John Smith. All are traditions of man. You choose their authority over the Truth of God's Word. And all through history man has lied. They have a sinful nature. God does not. His Holy, righteous and perfect. In God's word, when we do not understand a passage, another passage can bring light to the one we did not understand. With man this is impossible because they all speak lies, God does not lie.
---Mark_V. on 5/10/12


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In the old testament times, people would go to the priest when they needed God's help, because the Levites were appointed to be the overseers of God's spiritual work. But today, full access to God's Spirit is given to the people through Jesus, and no longer restricted only through the Levite priest of the temple. Those in overseeing the church today are still ordered or ordained as was in the old testament, but God's ministry of the outpouring of his Spirit has extended itself outside of the confines of the temple. And forgiveness is administered by all Christians today, and not only limited to the leaders of the church. And God's extended ministry of forgiving by all Christians, is commanded and comissioned and expected by God.
---Eloy on 5/10/12


" Who gave you authorithy on scripture?". The Holy Spirit brings light to His Word. Comparing Scripture with Scripture. You compare Scripture with traditions of man. You do not believe the Bible is final authority. You believe sinful man has authority over God.
---Mark_V. on 5/10/12

Mark,

So why do you have authorithy over those who don't go by tradition?
---Ruben on 5/10/12


Ruben, the keys to the kingdom is the Holy Ghost. After a person becomes a born-again Christian we have access to the Throne of God, and are made citizens of the heavenly kingdom, and our King comissions us to go out into the highways and the biways of life and welcome others to also become saved and so they will be able to go in and out and find pasture.
---Eloy on 5/10/12


Ruben, you say,
" I am entitle to the same HS that Jesus said he will send to leads us to all truth"

Jesus never said you were entitle to anything. The Holy Spirit is freely given to those whom God will's to give it to.
"Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know "the things that have been freely given to us by God" (1 Cor. 2:12).
You asked me,
" Who gave you authorithy on scripture?". The Holy Spirit brings light to His Word. Comparing Scripture with Scripture. You compare Scripture with traditions of man. You do not believe the Bible is final authority. You believe sinful man has authority over God.
---Mark_V. on 5/10/12


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Mark_V.* if he does we can say they have met standards of the gospel Truth and according to Scripture,

But why is your interpretaion of scripture correct over mine? Who gave you authorithy on scripture? I am entitle to the same HS that Jesus said he will send to leads us to all truth. Scripture tell us he will built his church on the Rock of Peter, scripture tell us that his flesh is real food and we must eat his flesh, scripture is full of warning to christians about losing their salavtion but you say different, how does one say you right and I am wrong?
---Ruben on 5/9/12


Ruben, Every born-again Christian IS a disciple from Christ, and has received the Holy Ghost, and has been given the keys to the Kingdom of God. That is how we can effectively evangelize, and lead others into forgiveness of their sins, and for them to accept the King of the Kingdom.
---Eloy on 5/8/12

Eloy,

Where does scripture tell us we all accept the keys to the kingdom of heaven? How does a believer forgives someone who sins on himself: example Adultery, fornication?
---Ruben on 5/9/12


John 20:23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them, and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

This is the power given to the curch for discipline of members.

here is an example of how it is used: 1 Cor 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

1 Cor 5:5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

2 Cor 2:7 So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him,
2 Cor 2:10 To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ,
---francis on 5/9/12


Ruben, you ask me,

"What happens to the believer that does not believe in your interpretation of scripture?"

Ruben, I am not God. But If he is a believer already, he should know the Truth and believe it with a contrite heart, through faith and if he does we can say they have met the standards of the gospel Truth and according to Scripture, they are proclaimed saved.
If he is stuck in traditions of man, and refuses to believe the gospel truth, then we can say to them their sins have not been forgiven according to Scripture, not according to us. And we can show them from Scripture where they are wrong.
---Mark_V. on 5/9/12


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Marc, salvation by works is not only in the Jehovah Witnesses, but in the Mormons, Islam, the RCC, the Eastern Orthodox. Protestants were the only one's who believed in Justification by faith alone in Christ alone. But since the 1800's many of the churches have gone back to embrassed salvation by works. It's found in many Christian Churches today. I get angry at Steven G, for condemning the Church of Christ, but he is right that in many cases, they have lost their first love. But no matter what man does, God always keeps for Himself a remnant for Himself. Even when Israel went back to their idols God always reserve for Himself His elect, His remnant even so today.
---Mark_V. on 5/9/12


Ruben, Every born-again Christian IS a disciple from Christ, and has received the Holy Ghost, and has been given the keys to the Kingdom of God. That is how we can effectively evangelize, and lead others into forgiveness of their sins, and for them to accept the King of the Kingdom.
---Eloy on 5/8/12


If you're a Jehovah's Witness forgiveness of sins is obtained by doing works e.g. "Jehovah God offers you something wonderful - everlasting life..you must have faith in Jehovah...However, MORE THAN FAITH IS NEEDED. There must also be works." (You Can Live Forever in Paradise On Earth, 1982, p. 250.)

In essence, by knocking on doors, you can have your sins forgiven...by yourself.
---Marc on 5/8/12


Mark_V.* /// Jesus was saying that the believer can ///

Wait a minute! Scripture tell us:

"when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you"..And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them, and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained" ( JHn 20:19-23) ( He was talking to the disciples only!)

Mark_V.* When we preach the gospel, and someone believes with their heart through faith, and repents,

What happens to the believer that does not believe in your interpretation of scripture?
---Ruben on 5/8/12


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We Christians each have the power to forgive sins that others have offended against us personally. But the sins that others have committed against others, or that others have committed against God, the guilty offender must repent to that one whom they offended against, either the person or God or else both the person and God.
---Eloy on 5/8/12


Peter, I agree with Josef's answer. He did very good. The idea in (John 20:19-23) this verse does not give authority to Christians to forgive sins.
Jesus was saying that the believer can boldly declare the certainty of a sinner's forgiveness by the Father because of the work of His Son, if that sinner has repented and believed in the gospel. The believer with certainty can also tell those who do not respond to the message of God's forgiveness through faith in Christ that their sins, as a result, or not forgiven. When we preach the gospel, and someone believes with their heart through faith, and repents, we too can tell them that their sins have been forgiveness base on the principless of the Word. They can be sure heaven is in accord.
---Mark_V. on 5/8/12


Any validly ordained priest or bishop can absolve someone from his sins if he has made an honest confession.
---Catholicus on 5/7/12


Lawrence:

After his resurrection, Jesus gave this power to his disciples: John 20:23:
"Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them, and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained."

He also gave Peter the power to bind and loose: Matthew 16:19:
"And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

He similarly gave the same power to all believers in Matthew 16:18.
---StrongAxe on 5/7/12


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Only God.

The r r c priest & or others of the apostasy trinity ONLY think they can.
---Lawrence on 5/7/12

Lawrence,

They told Jesus the same ting:

"Hes blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone? (MK 2:7)

But notice what Jesus says "But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.v 10 Then scripture tell us :" When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe, and they praised God, who had given such authority to ' MEN '. "( MT 9:8)
---Ruben on 5/7/12


Only God.

The r r c priest & or others of the apostasy trinity ONLY think they can.
---Lawrence on 5/7/12


Cluny:

Why is Apostolic Succession such an important issue? In Mark 9:38-41, when a stranger (who was no apostle, nor sanctioned by one) was casting out devils in Jesus's name, the disciples tried to forbid him, but Jesus told them not to, "for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. For he that is not against us is on our part."

When Jesus gave Peter the power of binding and loosing, he did not say this power was necessarily exclusively given to him and only him, and to no others.
---StrongAxe on 5/7/12


Jesus said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them, if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." (in John 20:22-23) I see that in connection with receiving the Holy Spirit they could forgive sins. So, the Holy Spirit now is the same Holy Spirit who in and through us forgives sins. And "it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me," Paul shares in Galatians 2:20. Christ living in me forgives, through me. "If you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses." (in John 12:26) Yes, Jesus in us still forgives, sharing this with us.
---willie_c: on 5/7/12


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The only sins that a man, [No gender implied], is capable of, or called to forgive, are sins, (as in transgressions or offenses), committed against that man. As man comes to the Father in repentance, man is instructed to confess their sin, and ask the Father to forgive that sin, as that man has forgiven those who has sinned against them." Past sins against the Father, for the believer, He has forgiven. Therefore we are further instructed to "be kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God, for Christ's sake, has forgiven [us]. Eph 4:32
---joseph on 5/6/12


Luther himself even after the Reform had begun said he went to confession weekly. Lutherans and Anglicans have retained auricular confession.

But this broaches another issue--apostolic succession.

Christ is risen!
---Cluny on 5/6/12


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