True Forgiveness

“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

I John 1:8-9

My buddy told me a story of when he was a young man in the Army. He had volunteered to help with an activity that his commanding officer was leading. He was not required to help, but he liked his commanding officer and wanted to do it. It was an early Saturday morning activity and he cleared his schedule so he could be ready when the time came.

The Friday before the event, his buddies asked him to go out on the town and he gladly joined them. As the night turned into morning, my friend forgot all about the event he had volunteered for. When he finally went to bed, he slept in until well past noon. He was enjoying his Saturday when he realized that he forgot all about his volunteering responsibilities. He was disappointed in himself and dreaded showing up to work on Monday.

He showed up early to work and apologized profusely to his commanding officer for forgetting about the event. The officer was quite gracious and told him not to worry about it. He told my friend to give him 25 push ups and all would be forgotten just as he forgot to attend. My friend was relieved by this, but it was short lived. When he saw his commanding officer after work, the officer asked him if he had completed the 25 push ups. My friend looked at him puzzled and said, “You saw me do them, don’t you remember?” The officer simply said, “I must have forgotten. Give me 25 push ups!” This scenario played out several times a day over the course of a month and my friend vowed to never forget again. Although he thought things were made right, this was simply not the case.

I am thankful for a Heavenly Father who does not treat us this way. “He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” When we come clean with Him, He does not bring up our past, but rather forgives us completely and cleanses us from our sin. He gives us a spiritual bath when we confess our sins, and He completely forgives with no additional “push ups” needed. The very moment we sin He is there, ready to forgive us and clean us back up. He is always faithful to forgive and He holds no grudges. Psalm 103:12 states, ” As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” I am grateful for His forgiveness as I am prone to wander, and I am grateful that He completely forgives.

What do you need to confess today? Are you running toward His forgiveness or are you continuing in what separates you from Him? Will you be honest with God about your sinful condition or will you continue to lie to yourself? May we take advantage of God’s promise and be sure to keep a close walk with Him. May we be faithful to confess our sins to a God who is faithful to forgive us.

Stay in the Fight!


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