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Letter: Pamela Hairston-Chisholm
On judging, 'forgiveness'

Thursday, March 28, 2013

I was compelled to write and comment on Danny Clifton’s letter, “Life determines destiny” (March 18). In this letter, he comments that at almost every funeral, no one is labeled a bad person and wrote, “The preacher almost always says she was a good woman and he was a fine man. It seems as if we have to die and leave this world to have any hope of being labeled a good person.”

It reminded me of a recent funeral I attended. In the eulogy, the pastor stated that several persons had asked him if he believed the deceased was going to heaven. He looked at the crowd and shook his head. He said he could not answer their question, that he couldn’t make the call, that only God truly knows this answer.

Many of us sit back in judgment, knowing for sure that some are going to heaven and some to hell. Me, I can’t make this call for anyone. Take slavery. Can I condemn our Founding Fathers to hell because they didn’t free my people sooner? Can I condemn the many Americans who didn’t believe in slavery yet did nothing until a war forced them to think and do otherwise? No indeed, I can’t make that call; only God can.

The Bible tells us that God will forgive us 70x7 times. This illustrates God’s unlimited forgiveness. I’m not saying to take full advantage of these numbers — just ask his forgiveness whenever you feel the need. After all, doesn’t the Bible say that if you ask forgiveness, he will toss your sins away, never to be remembered? Boy, that’s a good thing.

One last thing. The Bible says that if we don’t forgive others, God will not forgive us. (This is why I don’t believe in capital punishment.) People, don’t let anyone hold your ticket to heaven. Forgive others for their transgressions. God knows our hearts.

As always, thanks for listening.

Pamela Hairston-Chisholm



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