For some people who cannot accept responsibility for their own choices and behaviors, they select another person as the cause and the reason for their unhappiness, and struggles. This oftentimes happens in familial and marriage relationships. – Inevitably, in those close bonds we will offend others in one way or another. We may even actually be the one who has caused pain and broken others’ hearts. And that is where love and forgiveness and restoration is needed. But too often, instead, there remains a burning or smoldering resentment.
It is natural to Hope that the people we have hurt will think better of us once we have sought to make amends. we may fear that there are some who will never upgrade their opinions about us no matter what we do. In reality, they may not, especially if they have chosen to use us as a “scapegoat.”
In The Jewish tradition of sacrificing animals as atonement for their sins, they would choose two male goats. One would be the “sacrifice,” and the other one the “scapegoat.” The Priest would place his hands on the head of that goat and confess the sins of the people, and thereby transfer their guilt to the scapegoat. They would then drive the scapegoat far into a desolate wilderness. It would carry all the peoples’ sins with him, far away from those who are guilty of wrongdoing. – Hence, the people never needed to think about those guilty deeds again.
Some of the people we have hurt will use us as their scapegoat. Since we have hurt them, they feel justified in sending us away with more than our share of the burden. They unconsciously place the blame for their pain on us so that we can carry it away. As their scapegoats, we play the role of removing something they were unable to deal with in any other way. Because of this, they may never welcome us back. We should be prepared for this kind of response and realize that their behavior says more about them than it says about us.
These Jews had to go through this ritual every year at Passover to remove the guilt of their sinfulness. One goat died in their place, and another took their sins upon him and was banished to wander in the wilderness alone. (See Leviticus 16:21-22)
This ritual was abolished when the Messiah, God’s own Son, stepped down from his throne in heaven, and humbled himself to be born as fully human in a manger. He was Jesus, the “Word of God,” by whom and for whom everything seen, and unseen was created! He came to be the sacrifice and the scapegoat for everyone who would believe. That is what God was doing when Jesus was crucified on a cross.
For those who do believe in Jesus Christ, He promises to make us into a “new creation,” and that our old ways of living will pass away; and that our old way of living and behaving will be replaced with a “new life.” — But we must choose to participate.
That is why God gave us free will. After we confess our sins and receive forgiveness, Jesus wants to change us into being a better person. That marvelous transformation begins when we really and truly surrender and ask God to become the Master of our life.
We are told to “Be holy, for God is holy!” (1 Peter 1:16) God never asks us to do anything that we cannot do. So, He places His own Holy Spirit within us when we ask Jesus Christ to be our Lord and Savior. This begins our transformational journey. Christian Life Recovery program guides you through that journey and supports you all the way. We all are strengthened by totally depending on God to do for us, what we cannot do ourselves. God loves those who turn to him. “Therefore, God has predestined us to become conformed into the image of His Son.” (Romans 8:29)
Jesus never wants his people to take their Life Recovery Journey alone. He tells us, “Where two or more believing Christians are gathered together. I am there with them!” (Matthew 18:20) – That is why we are here for you.
Let’s take this Life Changing Journey together!