FORGIVENESS IS GOD-GIVEN
“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make Him out to be a liar and His word is not in us.” (1 John 1:8-10)
As we saw several weeks ago—God created us, we rebelled, Jesus came, Jesus died, Jesus rose, we received the gift of salvation, and God forgave us. Forgiveness is God-given. But to be forgiven, His justice must be satisfied and our cleansing must be secured. Psalm 7:11 says that, “God is a just judge, and He is angry with the wicked every day.” Sin is serious in God’s eyes and must be punished. This is why Jesus had to be our substitute and no other substitute would do.
But He is not only just, He justifies. Romans 3:26 calls God the One who is “just and the justifier.” When He forgives, this doesn’t mean that He doesn’t care about our sin. He cares because sin is rebellion against His holy character. This is where the cross comes in—Jesus died in your place so that you could be justified through His sacrificial death.
This is why forgiveness is God-given and never predicated alone on how sorry we are. Oswald Chambers said that, “We trample the blood of the Son of God if we think we are forgiven (merely) because we are sorry for our sins. The only explanation for the forgiveness of God and for the unfathomable depth of His forgetting is the death of Jesus Christ. Our repentance is the outcome of our personal realization of the atonement which He has worked out for us. All the pleading which deliberately refuses to recognize the Cross is of no avail; it is battering at a door other than the one that Jesus has opened.”
We may hurt God’s heart and sin may create sorrow within us (and it should), but forgiveness is based on the objective historical, and spiritual reality that Jesus has died for our sin and we have received His forgiveness.
LIVING OUT GOD’S BEST TODAY
Application of God’s Truth
A loving father will never deny his children, no matter how they break his heart. Thank God that His love for you is unconditional.