Friday, July 16, 2010

Two words to set me straight

There are still times when I find myself struggling to keep an accurate idea in my head of what God truly thinks of me.  All it takes is a few failures -- or a few not-good-enoughs -- whether in my actions or my attitudes, and I can wonder if God is frowning at me.  But there are two words in Hebrews 10:17 that do a good job of getting my mind back on track with the truth: "no more".  There's something very final and complete about those two words.  But the writer to the Hebrews doesn't use those words in the way we typically do, focused on ourselves in a vain attempt at absolute self-control to get God to like us again.  His focus is on God's thoughts as he quotes God's promise: "I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more."  No more.  Never again.

So what does that mean if I sin?  Harsh words said in an outburst of anger -- selfishly insisting on getting my way -- a flash of pride in an unkind remark -- the lust of the eyes on a hot summer day.  Should I assume God doesn't care? That He'll turn a blind eye and pretend it didn't happen?  No.  This isn't talking about an ignoring of sin.  It's talking about not counting our sins against us.  When God looks at Ken Peters, with all my hang-ups, the sins He sees in me are something that He no longer keeps in mind in regards to who He considers me to be!

This sounds astounding -- even ridiculous when one stops to consider how much we blow it in life.  But it's possible because of the blood of Jesus that was shed for us (Hebrews 10:19).  Hebrews 10:22 says that our hearts have been "sprinkled clean" and that our bodies have been "washed with pure water."  Why would God focus on our mistakes and blunders and foul-ups in light of the amazing and eternal cleansing we have His own Son's blood?

Remember:  He remembers our sins "no - more."  That is why I can be encouraged and boldly draw near -- no matter how distracted I may be by sins that God doesn't even consider a factor in His opinion of me -- with "full assurance of faith" in the One who died in my place so that I could be forgiven forever!

© 2010 by Ken Peters

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow Ken, I love it! As I was reading your post I was thinking of the Westminster Shorter Confession definition of Justification:

Justification is an act of God's free grace, wherein he pardons all our sins (Rom. 3:24; Eph. 1:7), and accepts us as righteous in his sight (2 Cor. 5:21) only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us (Rom. 5:19), and received by faith alone (Gal. 2:16; Phil. 3:9).

I can't get enough of this doctrine!