A couple months ago a friend asked me to do a study on the topic of forgiveness. She knew I was struggling with some personal issues and that delving into God’s Word would help me find peace. So, I sat down with my copy of NAVE’S TOPICAL BIBLE and began my research. In NAVE’S, the subject of forgiveness had two divisions.
First, was the forgiveness of SIN. The verses given deal with the giving and receiving of forgiveness between God and man. For example, 1 John 1:9 states, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Second, was the forgiveness of OTHERS. These verses refer to the forgiveness between people. Col. 3:13 tells us: “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you have a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” As I studied verses pertaining to both types of relationships, God made it abundantly clear how they are connected and why forgiveness is such an integral part of our having a close bond with others and with Him.
To show this connection, I’ll start by sharing a few scriptures on the forgiveness of sin. In Num. 14:18 God tells us that He “is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion.” Then in Psalm 65:3, “When we were overwhelmed by sins, you forgave our transgressions.” And, Romans 4:8 states, “Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.” God tells us repeatedly that He will forgive our sin. We know this is due to the great love He has for each of us. In fact, this is evident when God sums it up nicely in 1 John 2:1-2 — “If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”
God desires to have a blemish-free, love filled relationship with every person He creates. Therefore, He designed a way for that to be possible–thru the blood of JESUS! Listen to what God emphatically stated in Jer. 31:34b: ” For they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sins no more.” How AWESOME is that? From these verses, we can take comfort and find peace in knowing that there is no sin too great that can’t be forgiven!
(Please come back in a couple of days and read Part 2. Thank you and may you all have a Spirit-filled day).