Nugget #5 – Redemption brings forgiveness, there is no other way.
(1 John 1:8) – “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
I am going to draw from and give credit to John MacArthur for his content on his website called “Grace to you”. I like what he has to say concerning forgiveness;
“The value of the gospel is that it provides complete forgiveness of all sin for the sinner who embraces the gospel. And the forgiveness that God provides for us is so comprehensive that it removes from the believer all defilement, all shame, all guilt, all punishment forever and replaces it with righteousness, security, and eternal reward. This is the gift of forgiveness. It is inviolable, it is irrevocable, nothing or no one can cause the forgiveness granted to the believer to be taken back, or to be rescinded. No one can talk God out of it, or change His mind, or successfully bring up any accusation against that believer that would cause God to cancel that forgiveness. The consummate promise that we cling to with regard to that is found in the eighth chapter of Romans verse 1 – “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Back in Romans chapter 4 verse 7 and 8 – taken from Psalm 32 say, “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven and whose sins have been covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account.” We are blessed because God will never take our sins into account. The Old Testament says; “He has buried them in the depths of the deep blue sea, He has removed them as far as the East is from the West, and He remembers them no more.”
Yet, in spite of this gracious and merciful generosity on God’s part toward all who repent and embrace Jesus Christ, we (according to 1 John 1:8-10) “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.” This is a statement of fact. However, very confusing to many.
MacArthur goes on to say, “Psalm 32 is prayed by David. David was a believer. David was a child of God who confessed his sin. In verse 1 David says, “Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.” In verse 3 He said, “When I kept silent about my sin my body wasted away through my groaning all day long; For day and night Thy hand was heavy upon me, my vitality was drained away…Then I acknowledged my sin to Thee, my iniquity I did not hide, I said, ‘I’ll confess my transgressions to the Lord, and Thou didst forgive the guilt of my sin.” Yes, David was a child of God, but when he didn’t confess his sin he felt tremendous pressure. It distressed him. What was happening was the guilt that was flooding his mind was having an impact on his body. Then he confessed and opened his heart, and he felt the free flow of God’s forgiveness and restoration. Believers by nature do this. It is the result of the work of God in them. It is the result of the work of the Holy Spirit in them. It is the result of the Word of God in them, all of which convict of sin. Yes, God convicts the conscience of non-believers…but we are talking about born again Christians here.
So, we have a problem here. We have a dilemma. Why would I confess and ask God to forgive my sins if I know that He has already forgiven my sin in Christ Jesus?”
MacArthur goes on to give several opinions others have given on the subject, but here is the one that makes the most sense, and I believe I can agree with;
“Well how are we to understand this apparent contradiction? Simple really, there are two kinds of forgiveness. It is true, as I said, that all our sins are forgiven as far as the judgment of God is concerned, He did that on the Cross. (That’s called “Justification”.) The ongoing confession of sin is related to sanctification. God is still grieved when his children sin. Yes, we are justified (which takes care of the judicial, or penalty of sin) but He wants us to be “sanctified” because we have not been delivered from the presence and the consequence of sin. That is an ongoing process and that is why we must continue to confess and be cleansed.” (www.gty.org)
1 John 1:9 – “if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins), and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”