HOW OFTEN WILL GOD FORGIVE?
Updated: Nov 25, 2020
All men are born sinners. (Romans 3:23) If we say we have no sin, the Bible says we are just deceiving ourselves and operating according to a lie. (I John 1:8) The broader definition of sin is “missing the mark” of God’s ideal. But the severity of sin is more than just missing the mark – it is missing the Kingdom. (Romans 6:23) When a person comes to Jesus in repentance and faith and receives Him as his/her personal Saviour, things change. At that moment God takes the list of our sins and writes across it in permanent ink, “Paid in Full.” (Col. 2:13-14) Never to be remembered again. (Isaiah 43:25) However, even after we receive Jesus, we still struggle with sin. When Christ saved us, he saved us from the penalty of sin. He then, through his indwelling presence, helps us overcome the power of sin. But it is only in our reunion with Him in heaven will we be fully delivered from the presence of sin. In the meantime - we struggle! It was to followers of Jesus John wrote, “If we confess our sin, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (I John 1:9) But how many times will God forgive me, you ask? One day Peter asked Jesus “‘How many times should I forgive someone who does something wrong to me? Is seven times enough?’ Jesus answered, ‘Not just seven times, but seventy times seven.” (Matthew 18:21-22) Jesus was saying, we never stop forgiving! You can be assured that God does not require of us more than He demands of Himself. Therefore, we must persist in our repentance never doubting the generosity of God’s mercy. Confessing, repenting and forsaking our sin - returning again and again in submission to Him as Lord of our lives. Francis Frangipane in his book, “Transformed in His Presence,” shares this personal experience. “During one period in my life I repeatedly stumbled over the same problem. Grieved and doubting in my heart, I cried out – ‘Lord! How long will You put up with me?’ In a flash of grace and truth He answered, ‘Until I have perfected you.’” Francis discovered that as long as we truly desire to be like Him, His rebuke is a door into His presence. (Revelation 3:20) God’s goal is to make us more like Jesus. (Romans 8:29) And He is at work perfecting that – even in our stumbling and falls. “God is the one who began this good work in you, and I am certain that he won’t stop before it is complete on the day that Christ Jesus returns.” (Philippians 1:6 CEV) Be blessed my friend. Glen Pitts, The Barnabas Group Proverbs 6:23; Psalm 103:12; 106:43-44; Revelation 3:19-20; I Peter 1:3-6; Micah 7:18-20