Do I have some good news for you? It is found in Exodus 34:6-7
“The LORD, the LORD GOD, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression, and sin…”
Our God forgives — this means He releases us as offending sinners or debtors from guilt.
Our God also pardons — here he frees a convicted offender from a deserved punishment.
In Romans 6:22-23, we read “But now having been set free from sin, and having become (love) slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our LORD.”
Who are you serving – the Adversary, the devil? Or, our Advocate, the LORD JESUS CHRIST? Whoever you and I serve, becomes our master and he pays wages. To the unbeliever, the wages are death. To the believer, the wages the LORD pays are holiness and everlasting life.
Both lives produce fruit. The unbeliever produces fruit that leads a person to experience shame. The new life in Christ produces fruit that honors and glorifies God and fills our lives with joy. I think the Psalmist grasped the significance of the Christ-life when he wrote “In Your presence is fullness of joy. At Your right hand, there are pleasures forevermore.”
In the garden of Eden, God gave the first couple a choice between two trees … The Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.
The two trees promised two very different outcomes: the first tree promised life. The second tree promised death and shame. They chose the second tree and immediately the relationship between them and their Creator changed. They died spiritually and they were ashamed.
Has that been your experience when you have done something you knew would not please God? Satan told you that the forbidden fruit would make your life complete. You took the bait and immediately you knew you had been deceived by our adversary. BUT IT DOESN’T STOP THERE.
In Revelation 12:10-12, we read “Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, ‘Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser (Satan) of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.’”
Our adversary, who deceives us into thinking that we will be fulfilled if we partake of the forbidden fruit, once we have eaten, becomes our accuser and consumes our lives with guilt and shame. But there is some great news for us. We can overcome him and his temptations by trusting in the precious blood of the LAMB OF GOD, Jesus Christ. We can resist him in the name and the blood of our Savior who died for us on the cross and we can send him away as we remind him of his fate and confront him by using God’s word.
My prayer is that each of us will walk in the victory of our LORD JESUS CHRIST as we receive His forgiveness and pardon.
In His love, Pastor Leonard