Fully Forgiven, Fully Free


When I’m asked, “Will God forgive me no matter what I do?” — I always say yes, no matter what you do.  That’s forgiveness, to the fullest.

But often the question itself is asking for permission to do something awful, and then yank forgiveness from God like a get-out-of-jail-free card.

And if that’s the motive: then we haven’t understood that forgiveness cost the life of God’s very own son.  Our sin had to be paid, and either we do or He does.  So God paid.  It’s not some abstract ethereal doctrine in the clouds.  There was blood, nails, tears, dust, and a dirty Roman cross — and there Jesus whispered forgiveness over his murderers under a sunless sky.

More than that: God aims not only to cover our disobedience, but also give a new direction.  Forgiveness is not only for what we’ve done, but it also empowers us into a fruitful, powerful life of abundance and joy.

Of course God will forgive you over and over, no matter what, but it’s an altogether different thing to embrace the fully forgiven life, in which God’s forgiveness isn’t just for our failures, but also for our future.  To cut short the work of this forgiveness is to only ask for less of God’s grace, and not more.  To see forgiveness as simply an erased record is only half the picture.  That’s to settle for less, and I don’t want that.

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