Monday, July 6, 2015

When God Forgets - Martin Wiles

I will never again remember their sins and lawless deeds. Hebrews 10:17 NLT

I stared at her, but her name wouldn’t come. The fact that I had taught her for three years made no difference. 

Obviously, she noticed my blank stare. With a smirk on her face, she remarked, “Have you forgotten my name?” Returning her smirky smile, I replied, “How could you tell?” 

Memory lapses are a part of aging. Since I’ve always had an excellent memory, these momentary lapses disturb me. While I know they come with age—especially the forgetting of names, I can’t help but wonder if they’re not foreboding shadows of some dreaded disease. 

Some things in my past I want to forget. Unkind remarks. Sinful acts. Unhealthy relationship decisions. Unwise disciplinary decisions made with children. But others I don’t. Such as what day it is. Or month. My wife’s name and birthday. Our anniversary. My address. Important things. 

Old Testament worshipers never had the assurance that God forgot their sins. Repeatedly bringing animals for a priest to slaughter on an altar constantly reminded them. The blood ran, but their sins didn’t. The animal died, but the feeling that something wasn’t quite right between them and God remained. They wanted to forget…but couldn’t. 

God is in the business of forgetting. Not that he is old and losing his memory—although he has been around forever. He forgets on purpose, and since he is God, forgetting is something he must purposefully do—not something that happens because of his age. He doesn’t forget the important things such as my name, that I belong to him, that he’s promised to meet my needs and see me through every trial, or that his Son has died for my sins. 

What God does forget are my sins. The ones I’ve confessed and repented of. The ones I’ve allowed the blood of his Son—not some animal, to cover. He forgets on purpose the ways I’ve failed him, so he can use me in the present. 

Confession and repentance is all it takes to make God forget our sins. Has he forgotten yours?

Prayer: Father, we praise You for not holding our sins against us when they are forgiven through Christ. 

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