In his final dying moments, Jesus said, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”

This powerful act of forgiveness is one that has baffled mortals for centuries. How could he forgive after he had been treated so brutally? Many of us have trouble forgiving the driver that cut us off on the freeway, yet he forgave those who persecuted him, jailed him, found him guilty, beat him to a pulp and then killed him.

Of course, he had been preaching the message of forgiveness throughout the entirety of his ministry. So, it stands to reason that he had to practice what he preached, but to such extremes? As he stated in one of his parables from Matthew 18: 34-35, “And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, …So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.”

So let’s examine the ordeal of Jesus, often referred to as the Passion of Christ, and examine what was really going on through that whole episode (at least in my opinion). Remember, Jesus said that we could do as he did in John 14:12, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do”

In other words, Jesus was serving the role of Exemplar. He was urging us to follow his example and in doing so, we too would be able to perform the miraculous acts that he did. Remember, in serving that role of Exemplar, he stated multiple times that it was “the Father within that doeth the work.” Also reminding us that the “kingdom of heaven is within.”

So his power actually arose from the fact that he was in direct connection with the Higher Consciousness that, in essence, exists within all of us. Unfortunately, our conscious minds that are so preoccupied with surface matters (the petty distractions that make us prone to insecurities, guilt, resentment and anger) prevent us from connecting with that deeper part of ourselves and its tremendous reservoir of power. I suspect that the physical ordeal he endured actually served to strengthen his connection to that deep inner self because it was the only way he could bear the tremendous pain he was being subjected to. Each stroke of the whip forcing him deeper within to that place of the peace that passes understanding and away from the physical horror he was facing.

What Jesus knew, and we do not, is that unforgiveness is a hook. No matter how slight, insignificant, or trivial that unforgiveness may be, it is a hook that keeps us imprisoned in the lower consciousness of our earthbound selves. Those hooks bind us to our physical selves where we are susceptible to the lower levels and perceptions of strife, pain and lack. His goal was to rise to the state of godhood. In order to ascend to that level, the hooks of unforgiveness had to be released totally from his consciousness – no exceptions.

Once in that exalted state of consciousness, often referred to as Christ Consciousness, Buddhahood or Avatar (before it was corrupted into cartoons), one can heal with the touch of a hand or bring about other seemingly miraculous events. But most importantly, one is then free of the physical limitations of the body and can join with the higher beings that exist in all religions and spiritual teachings.

Of course, that level of forgiveness is almost impossible to achieve without many years of intense spiritual and mental work. We can however make progress in developing a forgiveness mindset through training. There are many teachers in our society who have dedicated themselves to helping us to learn forgiveness utilizing various methods. One of those methods is Functional ForgivenessTM which is a process I have developed to help people create a practice of forgiveness at the most basic everyday level. It works on the premise that by learning to forgive the small things we confront on a daily basis, we develop our ability to forgive. This then becomes the resource we can use in seeking to forgive bigger more significant issues.

Father forgive them for they know not what they do!

Author's Bio: 

“One night in 1968, while visiting Detroit on temporary assignment, I had a powerfully vivid and prophetic dream.
I was startled awake to find my bed surrounded by flames, but I was unable to flee because my body was paralyzed. Then, at the foot of the bed, a wall-sized image appeared before me. It showed me walking down a tree-lined road. Along the road, I encountered a man standing. He appeared lost.

I greeted him and he came along with me. We walked together until we came to a gate. I approached the gate and opened it. Then I ushered him through the gate. He went on his way through the gate and I continued down the road. Next, I met a woman standing in the road. As before, I escorted her down the road to a gate and guided her through it.

This happened several times with either a man or woman meeting me along the road and I escorted each one to a gate. Each gate was different – wooden corral, fancy carved timber, wrought iron, solid steel, etc. Finally, after several encounters, the image at the foot of the bed faded, the flames died away and I was suddenly able to move my body again.?

I jumped up to see if everything was OK. There was no damage. Everything was the same as it was when I went to bed. I couldn't go back to sleep. I spent the rest of the night trying to figure out what had just happened."

That episode occurred in the home of my wife’s uncle who was the pastor of a church in Detroit. When I told him about my experience the next morning, he declared that I had received the calling to become a minister. I dismissed the idea at first, but eventually events in my life led me to accept the message. So, I finally entered training and became an ordained minister in 1982.
For the past 30+ years since then, I have lived that dream of showing people through their gates. My roles have been varied, in the corporate arena as a technology and management trainer, corporate consultant, corporate manager; in the spiritual world as a minister, motivational speaker, life coach. Yet my dedication has remained steadfast, to help others (including myself) find a way to live a better life.”
- Andrew Bozeman

Andrew Bozeman is a distinguished speaker, coach, writer and trainer with a deep belief in the unlimited potential of people. In fulfilling that belief, he seeks to offer gateways out of the dysfunction of limiting behaviors and beliefs. He has dedicated himself to the mental, emotional and spiritual transformation of those who are weighed down by self-doubt, self-criticism and negative mental chatter that prevents them from rising to their highest potential.

Andrew is now using his 30+ years of experience as an ordained minister combined with successful careers in business, to chart new pathways. He is helping people reclaim their lives by expanding their self-image, enhancing their relationships and achieving their goals. He has helped teams attain higher levels of performance and elevate their productivity.