The Gospels Shows Through
1 John 1:8 – “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”
One of the things that I really enjoy about children is their honesty. They are completely honest in most situations, sometimes even brutally so. As we get older we learn how to be deceptive, but children have a very special way of being brutally honest.
I remember talking to a lady who told her grandchild, “go get you dad and his friend (they were out in a wood working shop behind the house) and tell them its time for lunch.” Then she muttered, “I really didn’t plan on so and so staying this long, but since he did I’ll have to feed him too.”
What do you think the grandchild did? Out show went to the wood working shop, where she proudly announced, “Gran says it’s time for lunch. So come on in and eat.” Then to the friend, “she wasn’t planning on you staying this long but since you did she’s got food for you.” Honesty, brutal honesty.
I saw this today as I ran home for just a minute. Our neighbors 5 year old was playing outside and when he saw me he came over and asked if my children could come outside and play. I told him that I was taking the youngest one to an appointment and that I didn’t know about the older one, but he could knock on the door and see what they had planned for the evening.
He smiled a little bit shyly and said, “I came over into your yard and stomped on your snow today.” The honesty of his confession struck me and got my attention. It was 40 degrees outside, and the snow was quickly melting, if he wouldn’t have told me I would have never known. Not only that but it was something that didn’t matter at all.
Still he told me. It was almost like he had to. He needed to confess and get it off his chest. I dare say he needed to hear, “it’s ok, don’t worry about it.” Which is exactly what I told him. When I did he smiled and went back to playing. He needed to be forgiven. We all do.
Augustine said in the 400s, “Lord you have made us for yourself and our hearts are restless until they find rest in You.” How true that is, and I believe it would be fair to add to that and say, “our lives are restless until we find the freedom of forgiveness, and that freedom is only found in Jesus.” Jesus is the only one who can forgive. He is the way, the truth, and the Life, and He told us that the truth shall set us free. We find freedom from our guilt and freedom from our sin, only in Jesus Christ.
Forgiveness is something that we all need. Jesus made that possible by being the “spotless, sinless Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.” If you go back to the book of Leviticus and read about the sacrifices that had to be performed for the people to be forgiven you would be amazed. Leviticus 17 goes into detail about those sacrifices and about the gory mess that they were. What had to be done, wasn’t dinner time conversation, but we are reminded in the New Testament that “without the shedding of blood there can be no forgiveness of sins.” (Hebrews 9:22).
Jesus a perfect man went to a cross and shed His precious blood so that we certainly imperfect, sinful people could find forgiveness for our sins. I fully believe today that we all long for that forgiveness. I saw that in the startling and surprising confession of a 5 year. I see it in myself and I see it in others almost everyday. We sin we make mistakes, we stumble, we fall. We are sinners. If we claim we are not then we have sinned again and we are liars. We are sinners who desperately need to mercy, grace, love and forgiveness of God.
A forgiveness that is possible through Jesus. Forgiveness puts a smile on our face. It puts joy in our hearts. Why? Because it fills one of our deepest needs, the need to have our sins washed away. That becomes possible today only through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Without the shedding of blood there can be no forgiveness of sins. Jesus shed His blood for our forgiveness. He a perfect person with no sin died so that we might have life. We, immoral people who are sinners only have life because of His death.
We need to be forgiven and God has certainly met that need. Going above and beyond for us. It reminds me of the song, Amazing Love:
“I’m forgiven because You were forsaken
I’m accepted, You were condemned
I’m alive and well
Your Spirit lives within me
Because You died and You rose again
How can it be
That You my King should die for me
I know it’s true
And it’s my joy to honor You
In all I do, I honor You
That is the amazing Love of an a amazing Savior making it possible for all of us to have our need met, and our sins forgiven. Whether we are 5, 25, 45, or 105 that is what we need and I’m thankful for the holiness and love of God that makes it possible.