Saturday, January 3, 2015

I Am Redeemed!

                I am a sinner. Every day I fail, and I fall, and I sin against God my King. Every day I say something, do something, or think something that I know goes against His best for me, yet I do it. Not too long ago I blogged about a certain sin that was in my life that was eating away at me. (Blog title: Now I know how David felt) I thought I had taken care of this sin, confessed it, and was forgiven for it. But no matter what I did, it kept coming up before me. In the wee hours of the
morning, there it was, pounding in my head and not letting me forget the wrong that I had committed. Guilt and remorse followed, and the struggle to find forgiveness started all over again. I didn’t understand why this same sin kept coming up, over and over again. It would go away for a few weeks, and even for a few months, but then all of a sudden out of nowhere, there it was again; waking me from sleep to remind me of the guilt and shame I still seemed to feel.  It just didn’t seem to go away, and I cried out to the Lord to show me what it was that was happening in my thoughts and in my heart. He answered, and reminded me that I am redeemed.
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                “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to oppose him. And the Lord said to Satan, ‘The Lord rebuke you, Satan! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?” Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and was standing before the Angel. Then He answered and spoke to those who stood before Him, saying, ‘Take away the filthy garments from him.’ And to him He said, ‘See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes.’” Zechariah 3:1-4
                We have been redeemed. We have been given deliverance from the penalty, the guilt, and the shame of sin in our lives. One of the things that jumped up at me was what the Lord our God spoke to Satan who had come to oppose Joshua before God’s throne. Satan had come to stand before God and tell God all about the filthiness of Joshua’s sin. He does the same to us. The reminders of the sin that I committed, and have confessed before God are gone. They are no longer remembered before Him. He has taken them away with the shedding of His blood upon the Cross. I am redeemed.
                Not only that, but the Lord showed me that when Satan came to oppose Joshua, the Lord rebuked him. He did not hear one word of what he had to say. He didn’t even give him a chance to speak. He just looked at the accuser of the brethren and said, “Nope, not going to listen, He is My Child, I have redeemed him/her.” (My writer liberty for what I hear God telling the enemy on my behalf - not scripture!) He rebukes Satan for even the thought of accusing us and reminds him of the blood of Jesus Christ. Our God does not listen to the accusations that the enemy wants to bring before Him. He reminds Satan, and us, that He has taken away all our iniquity from us. All our filthiness that caused us to be separated from God, that caused us to walk in the sinful desires of our flesh are gone. All that caused us to be dirty before God are now made new. We have been given new, clean, fresh, white garments that no one can ever stain again. Not even our sins that we commit today can stain the garments we have been given because of what Jesus has done for us.

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                God cannot and will not see our sins through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Jesus’ blood covers all our iniquities; it has washed away all our filth. “Come now, and let us reason together,” says the LORD, ‘Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18) All my filthiness, all my iniquity is no longer remembered, nor is it held against me because I have been redeemed.
                I think we forget that we have an accuser. He seeks to destroy us and keep us in our sins as much as he can. If he can keep up in the same guilt, regret and sorrow for the sins that we have already been forgiven of, then he can keep us from living in the power of Jesus Christ. We live a defeated life when we allow the accuser to remind us of our past. But we are victors; we are “more than conquerors” through the blood of the Lamb. (Romans 8:37, Revelation 12:11)
Zechariah tells us that Satan had come to oppose Joshua. To oppose means to act as an adversary, it also means to lie in wait to accuse. How true is that of our enemy! He seeks to kill and destroy God’s chosen people. There is nothing he would not do or say to get you to question your salvation, and the power of God in your life. If he can get you to doubt the power of God’s forgiveness, then when you do sin, that sin will begin to separate you more and more from God’s grace. But God reminds us that He has removed our sins as far as the east is from the west. (Psalm 103:12) Every time I am reminded of my past sins, I need to be reminded that I am redeemed. The power of that sin no longer has any hold over me, because my God has freed me from the grasp of its sin and death.
Not only has our God removed our sins from us, given us new robes, but He does not see our sins anymore. When we do sin, we are to confess these sins because He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins. (1 John 1:9) All our sins- every single sin we have ever committed or will ever commit is and always will be forgiven because He is God and He says so. But, He also does not look on us and see all our sins, and faults, either. He looks at us and sees His perfect, blameless Son, Jesus Christ. We are blameless before Him because Jesus paid the price and redeemed us from the penalty of sin. We are the ones who see our own filth, not God.
“And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your own mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled –in the body of His flesh, through death, to present you holy and blameless, and above reproach in His sight-“(Colossians 1:21-22) The only person accusing me of past sins and reminding me of the guilt and shame of those sins is the enemy and my own mind. Satan’s goal and desire is to separate me from God and His Son Jesus Christ. If he can separate me from His grace, then he can also separate me from His mercy and forgiveness, and eventually lead me back into a life filled with fleshly desires and sinful death. There is no sin so great that our God can’t wipe away.
The devil has nothing on us, brothers and sister- absolutely nothing! We have been given new garments, the old filthy ones are gone away; they have been taken as far as the east is from the west. Our sins that caused us to be scarlet are now white as snow. “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1) We hinder the peace that forgiveness from God brings in our own hearts because we can’t look past our own sins. God has taken away all our iniquity; He has nailed it to the Cross. All means all, and that’s all all means! There is no sin, no shame, no guilt, no condemnation, and no remembrance of our sins anymore because He has removed every single one of them from us. He rebukes the one who brings accusation and reminds us today that we have been redeemed, and no sin can ever separate us from Him again.
“And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.” Colossians 2:13-14
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He does not look at you and see your sins; He looks at you and sees the blood of His Son Jesus Christ covering every single one of them.  “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) He does not remember them anymore, so why do we? He does not listen to any accusations the enemy brings to Him about us, so why do we? We are redeemed; we are free to live our life without guilt or shame ever again. He has set us free!

                Don’t let your past sins or even the ones you commit today separate you from the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ. He has forgiven you, and no accusation brought against you will stand, because Jesus Christ has paid the price and His blood saves us all. If God be for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31) Amen!