Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts. Let them turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.
An Everlasting Warranty
It would be nice to know that once something is fixed, it’s fixed forever. But it doesn’t usually work that way. Things break. We fix them. Then they break again. Eventually, we buy a new one. Even when companies provide a lifetime warranty on their products, there’s normally a catch. The fine print neatly hides the limits involved.
Do God’s promises come with fine print, with strings attached? Sadly, many people believe that because there are many who teach that. Their shtick normally goes a little bit like this: “God is a loving God who wants to forgive you. All you have to do is … (fill in the blank).” In other words, they suggest that God’s forgiveness involves some fine print. There are strings attached.
But that’s simply not true. God doesn’t base his forgiveness on what we do or don’t do. His forgiveness is not remotely tied to us being a certain way or achieving a certain standard. If that were true, how could we ever know whether God really forgives us, whether we’ve cleared the bar?
The Bible assures us that, in Jesus, God has forgiven the sins of the world. John the Baptist once pointed to Christ and said, “Look, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29), and the apostle John of him, “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:2). That means you. In Christ Jesus, God forgives you of every sin. Believe it. It’s true.
And that’s why, through his prophet Isaiah, the Lord urges us to forsake our evil ways and turn to him. Not because he will then forgive us. He already has! He wants us to know with certainty that “he will have mercy on (us) . . . for he will freely pardon.” That’s no limited, lifetime guarantee. That’s an everlasting warranty, purchased “with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect” (1 Peter 1:19). God’s forgiveness is waiting for you!
Heavenly Father, give me confidence that, though I am sinful, you freely forgive me for Jesus’ sake. Amen.
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