Forgiveness of Joseph, David, and Stephen

Victims of major crimes stand out from the pages of Scriptures as sources of inspiration when we ourselves need strength in forgiving offenders. Joseph, David and Stephan are three biblical characters that can inspire us when we need to forgive major offences committed against us still today. Joseph truly and fully forgave his brothers for selling him as a slave to Egypt. David forgave Saul for his repeated attempts at murdering him. Stephen forgave his murderers.

The forgiveness given by Joseph, David and Stephan inspire us to withstand trials (James 1.3-4)
The testing of your faith produces steadfastness (James 1:3-4)

These experiences of forgiveness that survived to our days within the pages of Scriptures have become a source of inspiration for me personally whenever I need to process through my own forgiving of persons who wronged me severely, or in the forgiving of smaller offences that occur in the natural process of day-to-day living and working.

Together, they form a part of what the Holy Spirit of God uses to comfort me and help me through difficult times in my life, as we learn from Romans 15:4, about the way the Word of God generally operates in the lives of those who love God. The French version of this article, Le pardon de Joseph, David et Étienne, presents this in a more thorough way. As far as this English shorter rendering of these vital concepts, my advice would be for every reader of this post to read the biblical text relating the experience of forgiveness of these three men of God: Joseph, David and Stephan.

The story of patriarch Joseph can be read in Genesis 37–50; that of David, in 1 Samuel 16–31, along with 2 Samuel and 1 Chronicles 10–29; that of Stephan in Acts 6–7.

Daniel Garneau
June 19, 2018