Do You Think You are Beyond the Forgiveness of God?
The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 5:20-21).
Some people think they are beyond the forgiveness of God. A gentleman named John was listening to the Basic Gospel radio broadcast one day. Something he heard prompted him to call. The shame and guilt in his voice were palpable. I asked him “John, do you believe you’ve crossed a line and that there is no hope for you?”
“Yes, that’s exactly how I feel.”
What a horrible place to be. If you believe your sins are so big that they have exhausted the supply of God’s grace, you are doomed to a life of self-condemnation. John was living his life under a blanket of self-condemnation. He had missed the grace of God for him.
I told John about the apostle Paul. He could have easily lived under a blanket of self-condemnation. He blasphemed God’s good name and persecuted Christians. As he said to Timothy, he was the chief of sinners. But God exercised unlimited patience with Paul and poured out his grace on him abundantly. John started getting the picture and seeing there was hope for him.
The gospel tells us that God’s grace never runs out. It is a limitless supply, which means there is no line you can cross. There is no place you can be that God cannot reach you. Paul isn’t saying that we should go out and sin more, as some would think. He is simply saying that God’s grace is bigger and more powerful than your sin. Consider this. Jesus Christ died not only for your sins but for the sins of the entire world. That’s how big his grace is. Then, to prove Jesus’s blood was sufficient, God raised him from the dead. Your sin could not keep him in the grace.
I was so glad John called us that day. He learned his sin could not keep Jesus in the grave. This loosened his grip on his self-condemnation and enabled him to receive God’s forgiveness in full.
Grace takes you out of your sin and places you in Christ Jesus. This is the place where God no longer remembers yours sins (Hebrews 10:17). Since God does not remember your sins, there is no need for you to keep dredging them up. In Christ there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1). If God doesn’t condemn you, there is no need to condemn yourself. You can set your heart at rest in his presence (1 John 3:19-20).