Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Carrying Around Our Sins

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (I John 1:9 NIV)

I was at the bank last Friday, Good Friday, making a deposit, when a man carrying a small gift box walked up to the teller next to me. “Guess what I have here,” he said to the teller. “A gift for me, I hope,” she responded. “No. I have my sins. And I don’t know what to do with them,” he said.

Hearing this, I casually said, “Take them to the Cross. You don’t have to carry them around with you.” The teller helping me nodded her head and said, “That’s right!” 

I think the man was a bit taken back by my comment and didn’t say anything, nor did the other teller, but I know they both heard it, and I hope the thought became planted in their minds for further thought later. 

This simple, and may I add divinely arranged, interaction sums up the Gospel message: Jesus died so that our sins would no longer condemn us and enable us to be unburdened by them. The Resurrection proved this was not some ridiculous dream.

Although the man in the bank attended a Good Friday service, he seems to not have grasped the true meaning of what took place on Golgotha two millennia ago. Before that weekend, the Jews had to make sacrifices that would temporarily cleanse them of their particular sins, but which could never completely eliminate them (Hebrews 10:4). In essence, they still had to carry their sins around with them. 

The Cross, however, forever eliminated the burden of doing that. No need to hold onto them. No need to continue carrying the guilt they naturally produce. We can give them up by laying them down at the foot of the Cross. John succinctly explains how we do that.

The truth, however, is, like the man in the bank, we often continue to carry them around with us, still burdened by the weight of their shame. We might claim we are forgiven, but the belief fails to penetrate our hearts. 

Are there sins you have committed over the course of your life that you are still carrying with you, of which you are still bearing the weight of their shame? Then today lay them down at the foot of the Cross. Confess them to the One who longs to forgive, and leave them there, believing in the promise that you indeed have been forgiven with no need to continue carrying them with you or ever needing to look back. You are at last free!

© Jim Musser 2018

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