Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Ultimate Stain Remover

I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.
Isaiah 43:25

Proctor and Gamble developed a nifty item for cleaning up accidental spills. Tide to Go, shaped and sized as a felt tip marker, easily fits in a purse or pocket. Drop spaghetti sauce on your shirt, no problem. Dribble hamburger grease on your tie, Tide to Go makes it disappear like magic. Via a chemical solution, stains are neutralized and removed.

Isaiah 43:25 reminds me of Tide to Go. How interesting that this verse was written while Israel was under the Law. There wasn’t any removal of sin, only a temporary covering. In the midst of endless sacrifices for even the tiniest infractions is this word of complete forgiveness. For those alive under the Law, this probably sounded too good to be true. Unfortunately many now living under grace find it unbelievable also.

Tide to Go does a good job but sometimes there remains a hint of discoloration. The stain permeates the fibers of the fabric leaving a mark literally in the cloth. When God blots out our sins all traces of them disappear forever. He leaves nothing behind to jog His memory about our failures.

If God is not holding onto and rehashing all of our mistakes, why do we? All past, present and future sins were paid for in full at the cross with the blood of Jesus. Forgiveness for all was sealed, good for eternity. As far as God is concerned, our sins no longer exist.

This act of pure grace on God’s part doesn’t give anyone a license to sin, as if we needed one. What is gives us is unrestricted access to God Himself. Any barriers that sin would erect were removed once and for all. Surprisingly, God did this for His benefit, not ours. Like us, God can’t forget. He chooses not to remember. Don’t be surprised when you go to Him whining about some old failure you’ll find He doesn’t know what you’re talking about.  He designed a plan that eliminates any reminders. Don’t waste time trying to buck His system.

The next time a guilt trip (not genuine remorse or repentance) tries to force you to bring up things from your past, don’t bother. God’s already dealt with them. Rejoice and relax that He’s wiped your slate clean with the blood of Jesus, the ultimate stain remover.
photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/coltrane/3608434116/">Christopher JL</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>

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