Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” Isaiah 6:6–7
You have been forgiven. Did you know that?
If you’re a Christian, then certainly you’ve heard of the forgiveness that Jesus brings. It’s what the cross is all about. The atoning, sin-paying, our-place-taking death of an innocent to serve as sacrifice. The Lamb of God taking away the sins of the world.
So, in one sense, you surely know you have been forgiven.
All of us who have come to Christ in faith have experienced that forgiveness.
But in practical, day-to-day reality, do you believe it? Do you live like it? Or do you feel, as many do, that the sacrifice of Jesus was miraculous and wonderful and cleansed us fully … unless you sin again, especially in a big way. Because then, maybe we’re coming near to being outside His favor once again. Because then, perhaps we have to do a few extra good deeds to earn our way back into the grace of God.
People who know they’re forgiven can go on to tackling the big tasks of the kingdom. But if we aren’t so sure of God’s current, unchanging forgiveness, we can tend to think we’re destined (like the dog in Proverbs 26:11) to return to our vomit. Then we’re stuck dealing with the never-ending tasks of guilt-removal, shame-reduction, and self-justification. So silly and unnecessary!
When Isaiah came face to face with the blazing holiness of God, he fell on his face and knew he was undone. What other response was even possible? But God didn’t come to Isaiah with the goal of crushing him or even of pointing out his sin. God’s character is not to destroy but to correct and support. God brought His judgement near, not to make Isaiah writhe, but to make Isaiah pure.
Think about it
God sent His angel to purify Isaiah’s lips. When you came to Christ, the Lord purged your entire being in the same way. As Christians, we do still sin. But with confession and repentance, we receive His forgiveness, and we are right back to where we were before the sin. Do you believe this? Do you believe it not only for other people but also for you?
We hope you enjoyed the Here I Am reading plan. You can learn more about Andy Hawthorne and his new book Here I Am here.