August 15, 2017
- By Ed Powell
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"In whom we have...the forgiveness of sin." Ephesians 1:7
Few of us know real conviction of sin. Many of us have experienced being sorry for the wrong we have done, having a sense of guilt for expressing anger and resentment to someone in a blatant manner, or even being disturbed and feeling great remorse from some sinful act we engaged in. Conviction goes much deeper than these feelings. It is not some sentimental sorrow that encompasses our life. Conviction is being brought by the Holy Spirit to an awareness that we have sinned against a Holy God, and that our sin has separated us from Him.
There is only one way an unbeliever can be forgiven of his sin and reconciled to God, and that is through the atonement of the cross--the sacrifice of Jesus Christ in the shedding of His blood for the cleansing of our sin. Redemption on any other ground is unconscious blasphemy. FORGIVENESS is the divine miracle of His grace that transforms sinful man into a new creation in Christ, and made acceptable to God through the atonement of Christ.
David had this experience of conviction after his sin of adultery with Bathsheba and his slaying of Uriah, her husband. When God sent Nathan, the prophet, to confront David with his sin, David was made desperately aware that his sin was primarily not against man, but God. His cries to God are reflected in Psalm 51 and specifically in verse 4..."Against thee, and thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight..." He is brought into a raw analysis of WHO GOD IS and his devastating sin that stood with unwavering conviction before him. This was true repentance which brought God's instant forgiveness and reconciliation.
Conviction is the awakening by the Holy Spirit to our sin. The Holy Spirit initiates confession and repentance, to which, when we respond, we are brought back into full relationship with God. How needful this is in our lives. God wants us to recognize our sin as sin against His holiness. Sentimental remorse falls far short of coming at the foot of the cross and saying to God..."I HAVE SINNED!" How great is the grace of God in this divine provision of forgiveness. How blessed are those words of His grace, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9).
Sin severs the freedom of the Holy Spirit to empower us in our walk and service. It breaks down our testimony. It's detrimental to our relationship with other believers. Pride seeks to hold us within its grip from responding to God's way of forgiveness. May we respond even as David..."Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me...Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation, and uphold me with thy free spirit" (Psalm 51:10, 12).
The holiness, justice, and righteousness of God forbid Him from forgiving apart from the atonement of Christ on the cross of Calvary. This is God's one and only provision for our sin...forgiveness...and reconciliation to Himself. But how glorious!
Being made "accepted in the Beloved" is all the work of His mercy and grace, completely apart from any works on our part. It is a gift to be received. Oswald Chambers said, "The Miracle of Redemption is that God turns me, the unholy one, into the standard of Himself, the Holy One, by putting into me a new disposition, the disposition of Jesus Christ." Praise the Lord!
© 2007 by Ed Powell. Used by permission.
This page was reprinted by permission from: http://litmin.org/dare.php?date=2017-08-15
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