If God’s forgiveness were like that often shown by us, it would not be worth much. Supposing God said: “I will forgive you, but I will never forget it; all through eternity I will keep reminding you of it;” we should not feel that to be forgiveness at all. Notice what God says: “I will remember their sin no more.”
In Ezekiel 18:22 it is promised that not one of our sins shall be mentioned; is not that like God? I do like to preach this forgiveness—the sweet truth that sin is blotted out for time and eternity, and shall never once be mentioned against us. In another Scripture we read: “Their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.”
Then when you turn to the eleventh chapter of the Hebrews, and read God’s roll of honor, you find that not one of the sins of any of those men of faith is mentioned. Abraham is spoken of as the man of faith; but it is not told how he denied his wife down in Egypt; all that had been forgiven. Moses was kept out of the Promised Land because he lost patience; but this is not mentioned in the New Testament, though his name appears in the apostle’s roll of honor. Samson, too, is named, but his sins are not brought up again. Why, we even read of “righteous Lot;” he did not look much like a righteous man in the Old Testament story, but he has been forgiven, and God has made him “righteous.” If we are once forgiven by God, our sins will be remembered against us no more. This is God’s eternal decree.
“If we are once forgiven by God, our sins will be remembered against us no more.”
We read in the Gospel of Matthew: “Moreover if your brother shall trespass against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone: if he shall hear you, you have gained your brother” (18:15). Then further on we read that Peter comes to Christ and says: “How oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Till seven times?” Jesus replied, “I say not unto you, until seven times; but until seventy times seven.” Peter did not seem to think that he was in danger of falling into sin; his question was, How often should I forgive my brother? But very soon we hear that Peter has fallen. I can imagine that when he did fall, the sweet thought came to him of what the Master had said about forgiving until seventy times seven. The voice of sin may be loud, but the voice of forgiveness is louder.
Let us enter into David’s experience, when he said: “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputes not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile. When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. I acknowledged my sin unto You, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and You forgave the iniquity of my sin” (Ps. 32:1–5).
David could look below, above, behind and before; to the past, present, and future; and know that all was well. Let us make up our mind, that we will not rest until this question of sin is forever settled, so that we can look up and claim God as our forgiving Father. Let us be willing to forgive others, that we may be able to claim forgiveness from God, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus, how He said: “If you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if you forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matt. 6:14–15).
by D. L. Moody
“[Prayer] has been the theme of prophets and apostles, and of all good people in all ages of the world…” Where God has worked, the...
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