We often talk about Jesus dying so our sins could be forgiven. I wonder, however, if we really understand what it means to be forgiven. It’s really important that we grasp this, because without it we could never have a relationship with God.
I don’t know about you, but I like to know what words actually mean if I am going to use them. So what does forgiveness mean? By definition, forgiveness is excusing an offense without exacting a penalty. Huh?
In simpler terms it means to set aside an offense without making a person pay for what they did. For instance, if you broke something of mine and I forgave you, I would no longer interact with you on the basis of what you did, and neither would I insist that you pay for what you broke. At that point we could continue our relationship without the offense being a hindrance. Make sense?
God is Forgiving
If the Scriptures tell us anything, they tell us that God is forgiving. While there are many Scriptures we could look at, let me give you this one. 3 Lord, if you kept a record of our sins, who, O Lord, could ever survive? 4 But you offer forgiveness, that we might learn to fear you. Psalm 130:3 – 4 NLT If God would constantly keep track of our sins we would be sunk! But He is the One who puts away our sins so we can have a relationship with Him.
Why Jesus Died
The Bible clearly teaches that Jesus died for our sins. I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. 1 Corinthians 15:3 NLT The reason He died was so our sins could be forgiven (put out of the way). 27 And he took a cup of wine and gave thanks to God for it. He gave it to them and said, “Each of you drink from it, 28 for this is my blood, which confirms the covenant between God and his people. It is poured out as a sacrifice to forgive the sins of many. Matthew 26:27 – 28 NLT His death paid the penalty for our sins so we wouldn’t have too. Because He died in our place, God can now legally put our sins away and welcome us into His family.
God has done everything necessary through sending Jesus for your sins and mine to be forgiven. However, we have to embrace God’s forgiveness by putting our trust in Jesus Christ. That means we believe His death on the Cross is all that was necessary to bring us into a relationship with God. Once we put our trust in Jesus, we will get to experience God’s forgiveness and enter into the joy of being a child of God.Mac Dumcum