Sunday, January 29, 2012

Job's Friends and All Your Sin

Reading along in my  One Year Chronological Bible, I came upon these words spoken by Zophar to Job, “Know this: God has even forgotten some of your sin" (Job 11:6).

That is a perfect example why the phrase “acting like Job’s friends” refers to someone who offers misguided and often hurtful advice to a suffering person. As my mother used to say, his friends added insult to injury.

“Forgotten…some of your sin.” Imagine the lack of consolation Zophar brought to Job. 

If God only forgot and forgave some of our sin, which ones would they be? The ones from ten years ago or today? Maybe only the little ones, but not the big ones. Or perhaps we could negotiate over a list of sins. 

Over a thousand years after Job lived, David, rebuked by Nathan for his adultery with Bathsheba, pleads with God for mercy and forgiveness and then writes these words, “Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, O my soul and forget not all his benefits—who forgives all your sins…” (Psalm 103:1-3).

All, not some or a few. David knew after his repentence that God had dealt with the totality of his sin.

John, the son of Zebedee wrote in the first century, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin” (I John 1:7).

One of the biggest lies the enemy ever perpetrates is that God can deal with only SOME of our sin. But John writes that Jesus came to cleanse us of ALL sin.

For a time, before I surrendered my life to the Lord many years ago, the enemy tried to persuade me that my sin was too great, that God could not forgive me. These thoughts tormented me, but one night I told the Lord I didn’t know if he could forgive me or not (I knew so little of God at that time), but if he could, my life was his. And you know what?

He did. 

Later in Psalm 103, David says, “…as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”

And Paul in his letter to the Hebrews refers to words also found in Jeremiah 31, “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more” (Hebrews 8:12).

I'm so thankful that today I can say along with Job (19:25), “I know that my Redeemer lives…” He has forgiven and forgotten all my sin.

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