“Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy.” (Micah 7:18)
Do you know the story of George Wilson? He was convicted of robbing the US Mail and given a death sentence for the crime. His friends influenced President Andrew Jackson to pardon him for his deeds, but instead he refused. The Supreme Court was called in to rule on the issue and found that if the delivery of the pardon is not accepted, no power is able to make one receive it. George Wilson was then hanged. What a sad and tragic story! Just think of it. A convicted man is given a second chance at freedom and he refuses it. That is simply mind blowing!
God does forgive but unless we are willing to receive His pardon by repenting of our sin, that forgiveness remains unclaimed. How often do we stop short of receiving a clean, daily slate for a new beginning? Written to Christians, 1 John 1:9, is still in effect. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Confessing our sin, which means we are willing to agree with God that a specific sin we have committed is actually sin, is where a pardon is offered. What Jesus has secured for us on the cross, by the shedding of His blood to cover our sin, is where we need to stand. Brokenness over that sin will follow, and repentance is complete.
Allow the Spirit of God to probe your heart right now. Is there anything in the area of rebellion present in your life? What a great God we serve, who offers pardon and forgiveness to all! We just need to receive His gift or if not, remain locked in the prison of our own undoing. The doors are open wide…will you step out of the cell?