Tuesday, February 28, 2023

            Psalm 32 speaks to the important matters of confession and forgiveness.  Just think for a moment about how wonderful forgiveness feels.  If you have asked for forgiveness from someone and received it or granted forgiveness to someone who asked you for it, you likely felt a sense of peace and contentment wash over your mind and spirit.  I heard someone describe forgiveness as an overwhelming sense of joy.  And it is.  David knew this feeling.  He wrote, “Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit” (Psalm 31:1-2).  We are blessed when we experience God’s forgiveness.  What an amazing relief to know for certain that we are forgiven and that God does not count our sins against us! Blame gives way to release.  Remorse yields to revival and renewal.   
            We can know the joy of God’s forgiveness at any time.  We can approach His throne of grace with humility and confession and know that we are heard.  His ears do not fail to hear our feeble cries.  God does not “count” or “reckon” our sins against us.  Our sins are buried in the sea of God’s grace—forgotten and scattered as far as the east is from the west.  The word “count” implies record keeping or bookkeeping.  When sins are forgiven, God no longer keeps those records.  The records are destroyed and forever forgotten.  They are as shredded as receipts you might run through your shredder at home. The debts, ledgers or books of sin were settled decisively and once and for all at the cross when Jesus gave His life as the full and required payment for sin.  Psalm 130:3 says, “If you, Lord, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?”  Paul said in Romans 8:1, “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."
            David contrasted the joys of forgiveness with the miseries of harboring sin and persisting in it.  He wrote, “when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long” (Psalm 32:3).  The sting of shame and guilt seeped all the way into David’s bones.  Even now, we often feel the weight of guilt and shame when we know that we have sinned against God and when we have done the very things we should not have done.  The enemy often likes to manipulate or exploit that guilt or shame.  The enemy will often try to persuade us that we are hopelessly and unforgivably wrecked or ruined.  Yet, we have to remember that no sin is beyond God’s grace to forgive.  No sin was too great for the cross of Christ to make payment for.  The only sin that is too severe or too late is to die without Christ and His promise of life and salvation to all who believe in Him as the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6).
            David said that the burden of unconfessed and unforgiven sin was heavy and sapped his strength just like exertion and fatigue can wear us down in the heat of a summer day (Psalm 32:4).  If we allow Satan to burden us with shame and guilt, then we have allowed ourselves to be marginalized or sidelined in the game of faith.  A believer who is unnecessarily burdened by guilt has been effectively neutralized by the enemy. We can easily lose our passion to serve the Lord and to worship Him.   Keep short accounts with God.  Confess your sins when you recognize them.  Ask God to make you sensitive to the enemy’s shares, thickets and fiery darts of temptation.  Remember the promise of I John 1:9...if we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive those sins and to cleanse us from all acts of unrighteousness and rebellion. 
            At the end of Psalm 32, David calls us to sing to the Lord.  Our shame has been replaced by song.  Our guilt has been replaced with His righteousness.  We can rejoice in the Lord because our sins have been given to Him and deposited at the cross.  David wrote, “Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!” (Psalm 32:11).  Have a great Tuesday!  Remember you can always invite others to worship or worship again at youtube.com/FirstBaptistKannapolis. 

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