Then he adds: “Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.”  Hebrews 10:17

During Old Testament times people were required on a regular basis to offer up sacrifices because of the sin in their life. These sacrifices were made according to God’s law to satisfy, or appease God’s anger at our sin. In a sense they were there to constantly remind us of our failings.

Few of us realize what it means to make a sacrifice like they did in the days of the Old Testament. It cost something. It cost the best lamb from the flock or the best fruit from the harvest. To offer up a sacrifice a person would have to recount all of their sins. It must have been a painfully embarrassing process. The problem with sacrifices back then is that while they appeased God for a time, they didn’t last because you’d leave the tabernacle and go sin again. So you would have to repeat this process time after time.

When Jesus died on the cross He provided a perfect, eternal sacrifice. It didn’t cost us anything, yet it cost Him His life. He not only endured the physical punishment of being beaten until he was near death. He endured the emotional pain of being rejected by His friends, His nation and even God His Father.

Because His sacrifice was perfect it only had to be done once. Since He did this for me I only have to ask Him to forgive my sins and repent of my sinful habits. Repent means to change my mind, or change how I think about sin. When we do this we are promised that those sins will never be held against us. We are FORGIVEN FOREVER!

The problem for us sometimes is that we don’t feel forgiven. Guilt and shame rob us of the freedom we have in Jesus to forget our past mistakes. There may be consequences to our mistakes that constantly remind us we failed. There may be people in our lives that bring up our past mistakes constantly and try to make us feel the pain of being a failure.

Some habits and sin is hard to leave behind. It may be an addiction. It may be the language you use. It could be having thoughts you know aren’t pleasing to God. It could be worry or a large debt or any number of things. You fail time and time again to live free of that sin but it never works. You feel trapped.    

Remember that God looks at your heart, not your actions. He’s given us His Holy Spirit to guide us on a daily basis, but when we slip up He won’t shake His head and say “here we go again”. He just helps us up, and encourages us to continue in His way.

Don’t let sin keep you from enjoying God’s best. He is ready and willing to forgive you always. He knows you are weak, but your weakness will never remove you from His love.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus. I thank you today that you understand me even when I rebel and go my own way. The sins of my past keep haunting me. Every day it seems like I fail you in some way. I struggle with the guilt and shame of my mistakes. Please help me to accept your forgiveness and to forget my past mistakes so I can live in your freedom. Empower me by your Holy Spirit to live daily for you. Amen.