Too many Christians continue to wade in the shallow end because we cannot fathom the depth of Jesusâ€™ forgiveness. Our memories do not allow us to let go of the guilt we feel because of our sin. We have a hard time believing that God actually forgets our sin when we are forgiven. Why is that?
Itâ€™s because we apply our human minds to the mind of Christ, just knowing that He canâ€™t actually forget my sins anymore than I can forget my own. This is known as spiritual defeat and it is one of Satanâ€™s most trusted arrows in his quiver of hate that he uses against you and me.
When Jesus instituted the Last Supper He said these amazing words right before He and the others drank from the cup:
â€œFor this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.â€ (Matthew 26:28)
Jesusâ€™ shed blood is available for anyone who accepts His atonement for their sins; unfortunately too many will not swallow their pride and admit that they need this amazing forgiveness. And too often those who have accepted Christ as their Savior live their Christian lives as though theyâ€™ve never been forgiven. They live unforgiven and unforgiving lives. Such a shame!
Karen and I were driving home yesterday from Tampa and listening to Casting Crownsâ€™ CD â€œThe Altar and the Doorâ€ and the song â€œEast to Westâ€ came on and the chorus is such a reminder of Jesusâ€™ sacrifice for my sins:
Jesus, can You show me just how far the east is from the west
â€˜Cause I canâ€™t bear to see the man Iâ€™ve been come rising up in me again
In the arms of Your mercy I find rest
â€˜Cause You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other
This song is a reminder of what David wrote so many centuries ago as one who knew and had experienced Godâ€™s great mercy:
â€œAs far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.â€ (Psalm 103:12)
Perhaps knowing this may help us: if we will not embrace the blessed promise of Jesusâ€™ forgiveness then what are we saying to Him? Is the Bible untrustworthy? Was Jesusâ€™ atonement on the cross not sufficient for you and me? Did the Prophet Isaiah lie when we wrote Godâ€™s words?
â€œI, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins.â€ (Isaiah 43:25)
If I do not believe that God has forgotten my sins, then what else do I not believe in the Bible?
Beloved it takes faith to live in a forgiven state; I must trust and believe that Jesusâ€™ sacrifice was sufficient to cover my sins. I am forgiven not because I believe I am but because of Jesusâ€™ atoning sacrifice on the cross. Oswald Chambers puts it this way:
â€œForgiveness means not merely that I am saved from hell and made right for heaven (no man would accept forgiveness on such a level); forgiveness means that I am forgiven into a recreated relationship, into identification with God in Christ. The miracle of Redemption is that God turns me, the unholy one, into the standard of Himself, the Holy One, by putting into me a new disposition, the disposition of Jesus Christ.â€
Is your disposition that of Jesus Christ? Are you holy because He is Holy?
Living the sanctified life means wading into the deep end.
Let us make our way there; slowly to be sure no one goes under.
Tomorrow weâ€™ll talk more on sanctification.
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Copyright Â© 2010 David Jeffers