Forgiven! That word is one of the sweetest words I know. Especially when I know I in no way deserve it, I have done nothing to redeem myself, to erase my mistakes. I am guilty, my soul is dirty, I am weak, But God doesn’t see me that way, He loves me and through His love and sacrifice for me I am washed clean, made new, forgiven! Praise the Lord for his forgiveness, his grace, his mercy. I have thought much about being forgiven lately and about forgiveness, it’s been weighing on my heart. Tonight God has led me to seek His word on the subject and share it with you. Prayerfully consider what scripture says about being forgiven as we go to the Word.
Luke 23:34 is in my opinion the most powerful verse on forgiveness. The fact that Jesus as he was dying on the cross, after enduring untold tortures because of my sin (and yours) should cry to God the Father to forgive me, forgive us – well, all I can do is thank Him, praise Him, follow Him. My heart is broken at the thought of how undeserving I am yet He loved me that much!
Look upon mine affliction and my pain; and forgive all my sins. Psalms 25:18
Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people, thou hast covered all their sin. Selah. Psalms 85:2
Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Psalms 32:1
Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.
As Paul points out in the Romans verses above David was very adept at understanding forgiveness, and asking for it. He knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that God loved him in spite of his weakness, brokenness, humanness. David will be among the Old Testament saints under the alter in heaven spoken of in Rev. 6:9 for he knew God and looked forward with hope to his redemption through the blood of Christ. He even describes the crucifixion in Psalm 22.
That is just what God does when we know Him, he forgives us for our sins and forgets them, they are wiped away, erased. Thank you God for cleaning my soul, forgetting my past, creating in me a clean heart.
And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.
Again we see that when we believe we are converted from our old self that lived for the flesh, for sin to a new creature and thus forgiven, free of sin. But as the next few verses indicate because we are forgiven our sins we ought also to forgive others who sin against us. Yea, I know it’s hard. Believe me I know, but I figure if God can forgive and forget all the things I have done then the least I can do is the same for others. Now forgiving someone for hurting you does not mean you have to condone their behavior or actions – quite the contrary we are told in several places to rebuke a brother or sister who harms us (gently folks, gently – trust me rebuke in love) and then forgive them whether they repent or not. If we don’t forgive then we will be eaten up with it, bitterness, pain, hurt and that’s not what God wants for us. He loves us and wants us to be free from those things so we can accept completely His grace and mercy to us, which then enables us to reflect it onto others, showing them the love shown to us.
And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. Mark 11:25
Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. Luke 7:47
And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. James 5:15
And now we get to the meat of it. How to seek God’s forgiveness. It’s so easy, yet the hardest thing you will ever do because you have to let go of your pride, humble yourself, admit you are broken and need saving, a savior and then ask Him to come into your heart and save you. The day I recognized and admitted my need for Jesus was… It was the most glorious day of my live, it was the longest walk though from the spot I was standing when I heard the call to the aisle I would take to the altar. But let me tell you when the pastor looked at me he spread his arms and in that moment I knew it was Jesus who was looking at me with His arms wide open, not Rev. Ike. It was Jesus who was saying “Child, I love you. Let me give you peace, rest.” That moment my life changed I was made new and I thank God with all I am for it.
For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee. Psalms 86:5
Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. Acts 8:22
And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Colossians 2:13
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name’s sake. 1 John 2:12
My prayer tonight is that if you aren’t already among the little children John mentions in the above verse you will seek to be among the forgiven – ask Jesus to forgive you today. Seek Him, accept His gift of grace, and know that you are forgiven!