Forgiving Ourselves

 

It is true that some followers of Christ have a difficulty forgiving others of their sins, but far too often it is not others with whom we have difficulty finding forgiveness.  Christian men and women oft times refuse to follow the command of the Savior to forgive by failing to forgive themselves of their own shortcomings.  We may have shown true repentance by praying to God and asking Him to forgive us of our sin, and yet years later we may find ourselves still burdened with the guilt of something for which God has already forgiven us!  Why do we burden ourselves so?  Is it because of a lack of faith on our part?  Do we not trust the Lord to keep His promises?  What promise has He ever made that He failed to keep?  1 John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."  According to the word of God we have already been forgiven for the sins we have confessed.  Let go of the guilt, trust in Him, and know that God wants us to be happy!

 

Ezekiel 18:4 says, "Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sins, it shall die."  We are not responsible for how other people have behaved.  We are not responsible for otherís sins.  We are not accountable for those who have chosen to reject Christ in spite of our pleadings, even if this person was a loved one, or a close family member.  We are all ultimately responsible for ourselves.

 

For proof of what God deems a repentant heart one need look no further than the example of David.  When David was confronted by Nathan in 2 Samuel 12:1-12 regarding his sin with Bathsheba and having Uriah killed, David said, "'I have sinned against Jehovah.'  And Nathan said unto David, 'Jehovah also has put away your sin; you shall not die.'"  (2 Samuel 12:13)  David did not have to do anything in order to merit forgiveness.  God, speaking through His prophet Nathan, accepted David's statement as all He needed in order to forgive David.  Why should we expect anymore of ourselves?  Repentance has always been desired of God.  Penance has never been a part of Godís plan.  We need to trust in God, and stop beating up on ourselves!  "Jehovah is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart, and saves such as are of a contrite spirit."  (Psalm 34:18)  I would that any who are harboring guilt and anxiety of sins committed in the past to let go of your guilt, and trust in the Lord to forgive you as He has promised those who come to Him in repentance.  Your worrying over whether or not you can be forgiven and your desire to make things right show a repentant and contrite spirit on your part already; therefore, you ARE forgiven by God.  No longer should you feel burdened with the guilt of past forgiven sins.  They are no longer on your account, for they have been wiped clean by the blood of the Lamb (1 John 1:7).  

May God bless you!

David Ferguson