The title of this leaflet rolls off the tongue in an easy manner. But it is a statement containing a deep truth found in the hearts of men and women. It is a belief that has been held by kings and commoners, rich and poor, educated and uneducated – people from all nations speaking many languages.
The forgiveness of sins is something that we all want to believe. We have the knowledge that in our future lies the grave. Deep within the heart, though not willingly acknowledged, is the memory of those things we have done, and fear of the punishment those actions reap.
Please consider along with me:-
To believe in the forgiveness of sin, we must first acknowledge that there is sin, and that sin is in our lives, minds, and hearts.
What is sin? Sin is any breaking of the Law of God. Where is the Law of God found? In the Bible – the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20 verses 1 to 17). However, Jesus condenses all that teaching into two commands: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew chapter 22 verses 37 to 39).
Reader, look into your heart and mind – have you kept both of these? If not, in all honesty, you must acknowledge that you have sinned, and therefore are a sinner.
But there is more to sin than just breaking God's Law. If sin is to be “forgiven”, then someone must have been offended by our actions or words – if not, why would we need forgiveness? But sin is not just offending “someone”; it is an offence to the God who gave the Law.
Think about the true enormity of that sin. Sin desecrates, dislocates, and destroys our relationship with God. So it is not just against the Law that we have sinned; we have offended the God who gave that Law. Strangely, this is good news! The Law cannot forgive – but a person offended can forgive. God is willing to forgive.
How does forgiveness come? Through the death of Jesus Christ, God's only-begotten Son. Christ came into this world as a human being and died for sin. Although sinless, He took sin upon himself, and suffered on the cross for sinners, so that we may know the “forgiveness of sins”. When we look upon His cross, we see both the terrible reality of sin, and the price God has paid to bring us forgiveness.