Should I always forgive someone who has harmed or hurt me or should I only forgive if the person repents? I have friends who have been harmed in many ways. One friend recalls how an overzealous corporal humiliated him in the army in front of others. Another friend remembers the pain of a close friend taking advantage of her. Another friend recollects the enormous betrayal of an unfaithful spouse. My counsel to all of them has been to forgive the offender, to release the debt of hurt and pain, and to trust God to ultimately correct all wrongs. Sometimes the offender has repented in other cases not.
Paul and Janice Crouch, the founders of Trinity Broadcasting Network, built up a single Christian station into the world’s largest Christian television network. And things have turned out well for them. The network’s donors help fund generous salaries of R4 million a year for Paul and R3.5 million for his wife, Janice. There are other perks as well, including a TBN-owned jet and 30 homes across the country, among them a pair of mansions and a ranch in Texas.
Pastor Paul Crouch calls it “God’s economy of giving,” and here is how it works. People who donate to Trinity Broadcasting Network will reap financial blessings from a grateful God. The more they give TBN, the more God will give them. Being broke or in debt is no excuse not to write a check. In fact, it’s an ideal opportunity for God is especially generous to those who give when they can least afford it. Crouch told his viewers during a telethon that, “He’ll give you thousands, hundreds of thousands, and He’ll give millions and billions of dollars.”
I’m sure you have many friends who claim to be very spiritual, who love connecting with “God”, enjoy “feeling” his universal love, and even go on “spiritual” retreats and meditations. God is viewed as the life-giving force we all need to connect to, he is the Universe that empowers all life. These friends just love “God”. But when you ask them about the Bible, they think it’s irrelevant, patriarchal, just opinions or even hateful. The Bible is definitely not authoritative, respected or even listened to.