God will forgive because He wants us in the Kingdom, but it must be from the heart

Fred R. Coulter—March 30, 2019

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Greetings, brethren! Welcome to Sabbath services!

We're getting close to Passover time, so what is the most important thing—aside from receiving the Holy Spirit—that's necessary in our lives on a daily basis? It's something that even people in the world want, but are not willing to obey. What is it that we need every day? Forgiveness!

Especially overcoming the carnal mind, because I don't that any of us, yet, have perfect control over it. The reason that we have to have the resurrection is to get rid of all of the stuff that is up there in the mind, that everything in our life has been recorded there, and none of that—except the character of God—can come forth into the spirit realm. We can be thankful for that!

But forgiveness is necessary!

Let's see the example of Jesus and what He did. Considering all that He went through and everything that transpired, look at what He did on the Passover Day, which exemplifies the whole thing concerning the Passover Day.

Jesus didn't say, 'Father, destroy them.' or 'O God, I'm so glad that You're going to take care of these guys.' NO! He said:

Luke 23:34: "Then Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them…"

  • think about all the things that they did
  • think of the evil
  • think of the nurturing of Satan to have them do it

Also, to know the battle going on between the angels and demons, at that particular time.

"…for they do not know what they are doing.'…." (v 34).

Luke 24:45[transcriber's correction]: "Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures."

How many people have the Bible and don't understand it? Or have it all mixed up? One of the most important things in beginning to understand the Bible is keeping the Sabbath. That's one of the most important things. That's why in Church at Home {churchathome.org} every once in a while I tell them to take the Sabbath challenge. Take four Sabbaths in a row—Saturday; from Friday night sundown to Saturday night sundown—and keep the Sabbath at home. Read your Bible, go over some of the things that we have at Church at Home, and ask God to give you understanding. You will be surprised how that will work.

The first time I did that with a man whose wife was being called into the Church, and he was somewhat antagonistic about it, and I suggested that he do that. Sure enough, he understood it. Understanding comes with obedience!

Someone who hates God and doesn't understand the Bible, they look at the Bible as the worst thing in the world. I've got a book of the important people in the world that reject God. You would be absolutely amazed!

Verse 46: "And said to them, 'According as it is written, it was necessary for the Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day. And in His name…'" (vs 46-47).

God is the One who had to start it. Just like with coming out of Egypt. The children of Israel would have never gotten out of there unless God sent Moses and Aaron, and He started it.

"…repentance and remission of sins…" (v 47)—or forgiveness! Remission means removing and taking away!

"…should be preached to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. For you are witnesses of these things" (vs 47-48).

When you read the book of Acts you will understand how inspired the apostles were. Forgiveness of sins starts everything. You have to have the start, but with human nature you also need that all the time.

You cannot have forgiveness of sin without a sacrifice. It's Christ's sacrifice. What is our sacrifice? Baptism! Pledging to die if we don't complete!

Matthew 26:27: "And He took the cup; and after giving thanks, He gave it to them, saying, 'All of you drink of it." That's going down all through time!

Everyone who has the Spirit of God, everyone who belongs to Christ and God the Father, must do this!

Verse 28: "For this is My blood, the blood of the New Covenant, which is poured out for many for the remission of sins."

We're going to see later that in addition to baptism there's another sacrifice that's more pleasing to God. Now let's see how Jesus conducted His ministry.

Sidebar: I've mentioned this and we actually started it a little bit before the conference last year; that is taking Berry's Interlinear, and taking all the typeset of all the Greek and English. Just making a copy from the books wouldn't work, because some of the pages are light and some are dark, and some missing letters and so forth.

Then on the side for the English we have the Faithful Version. We finished Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and are halfway through the book of Acts. When I started it I said that it would take two years, so we're just about right on track.

But, I have to read the Greek and the English to proofread it. I tell you, that helps me understand the Greek even more. Some of these things really get exciting. I mean, when you understand that I'm reading what the apostles wrote nearly 2,000 years ago!

God is so great that He put it in a language that is very accurate and has preserved it down through time. Then when you go through some of the things that John Gunether has done, he's just finishing a section now on the Waldensians and those in the Piedmont Valley through the Crusades.

It's amazing that even some of their enemies, when they came to get them, wanted to know what they taught. They had the Scriptures. So, some of the enemies that came in to arrest them left convicted that they had more understanding than the pope! So, God worked in miracles there!

Think of that! We have the Word of God today, and we're living in a time when 90% of the Bible is going to be absolutely fulfilled, whether we live to see it all, or whether we die in the faith! We don't know how much time there is! Let's see what Jesus did and what an absolutely astonishing thing that was taking place.

Mark 2:1: "And after some days, He again entered into Capernaum, and it was reported that He was in the house. And immediately many gathered together, so that there was no longer any room, not even at the door; and He preached the Word to them" (vs 1-2).

We don't know all the words that Jesus taught, but we have all that are necessary for us.

Verse 3: "Then they came to Him, bringing a paraplegic borne by four men. And since they were not able to come near to Him because of the crowd, they uncovered the roof… [the tile] …where He was; and after breaking it open, they let down the stretcher on which the paraplegic was lying" (vs 3-4).

Here's a meeting going on and all of a sudden here's this noise and it opens up and there's sunlight coming through, and look what's coming down, a stretcher with a paraplegic on it.

Verse 5: "Now, when Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paraplegic, 'Child, your sins have been forgiven you.'"

What did Jesus tell the man who had the infirmity for 38 years in John 5? Go and sin no more! Notice that instead of people being happy that he was released from this:

Verse 6: "But some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, 'Why does this man speak such blasphemies? Who has the power to forgive sins, except one, and that is God?'" (vs 6-7).

What they were saying was true! Jesus was God manifested in the flesh! That is the thing that drove them absolutely wild all the time!

Verse 8: "And Jesus immediately knew in His spirit what they were reasoning within themselves…"

I wonder if we're going to have the same power as spirit beings? Think about it! Think about how this must have affected them! Who is this? They say that He's blaspheming! He looks that them:

"…and said to them, 'Why are you reasoning these things in your hearts?'" (v 8).

What would you think if you were one of the scribes thinking that very thing, and He looked you right in the eye and said, 'Why are you thinking of this?'

Verse 9: "'Which is easier, to say to the paraplegic, "Your sins have been forgiven you"? or to say, "Arise, and take up your stretcher and walk"? But in order that you may understand that the Son of man has authority on the earth to forgive sins,' He said to the paraplegic, 'I say to you, arise and pick up your stretcher, and go to your house.' And immediately he arose and, after picking up his stretcher, went out in the presence of them all; so that they were all amazed and glorified God, saying, 'We have never seen the like!'" (vs 9-12).

This is right at the beginning of His ministry. Think about how all of this spread through all of that area. Remember when Peter went to Cornelius, what did he say? You know that Jesus, you've heard all of what He was doing! So, it was well-known.

Let's look and see that this was same as it was in the Old Testament. What Aaron and the children of Israel did when Moses was up on the mountain receiving everything from God. Especially the way this is laid out in Exo. 31, God was telling Moses to tell the children of Israel that the Sabbath was a special perpetual covenant. Also, it included the Holy Days.

So, Moses comes down and he hears all of this uproar and God told him to go down, 'your people aren't doing well, so get down there and find out that Aaron made a golden calf.' I have always wondered if he was a idol-maker in Egypt? Aaron had them bring all the gold and made a golden calf and he said:

Exodus 32:8 "…These are your gods, O Israel, who have brought you up out of the land of Egypt."

Think about how great an affront that was! Here Moses is up there getting all the information from God. The children of Israel got impatient and said, 'We don't know what's happened to him.'

So, Moses came back down and he was so angry what did he do? He took the two tablets of stone that God had cut Himself and had put the Ten Commandments on and broke them! Later Moses had to cut two more and then God put it on that again.

After all that happened and not only was it worshipping other gods, but it was like a great rock concert with naked people dancing all around. Why did God forgive him? We'll find out why!

Verse 26: "Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp and said, 'Who is on the LORD'S side? Come to me.' And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves to him. And he said to them, 'Thus says the LORD God of Israel, "Each man put his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and kill each one his brother, and each one his companion, and each one his neighbor"'" (vs 26-27). That is all of those directly involved in it!

Verse 28: "And the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses. And there fell of the people that day about three thousand men." That was a bloody, bloody day!

Verse 29: "For Moses had said, 'Consecrate yourselves today to the LORD—even though it has been at the cost of a son or a brother—in order that He may give you a blessing today.'" That blessing was passing over.

Verse 30: "And it came to pass on the next day, Moses said to the people, 'You have sinned a great sin. And now I will go up to the LORD. Perhaps I shall make an atonement for your sin.' And Moses returned to the LORD, and said, 'Oh, these people have sinned a great sin, and have made themselves gods of gold! And now if You would only forgive their sin! And if not, I pray You, blot me out of Your book which You have written'" (vs 30-32).

Notice what God said; why did He say this? Verse 33: "And the LORD said to Moses, 'Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book.'"

In other words, 'Moses, you're not going to come up here and tell Me to blot you out of the book. That's My book, and I'll blot out whomever I'm going to blot out.' Back to no man can tell God what to do!

Verse 34: "And now go, lead the people to the place of which I have spoken to you. Behold, My angel shall go before you…."—switching from God Himself to an angel, one removed. So, when you go through Acts 8, that's why it talks about the angel.

"'…And in the day of My visitation I will visit their sin upon them.' And the LORD plagued the people because they made the calf, which Aaron made" (vs 34-35). So, they were all in on it!

Let's see something important. Moses goes up and talks to God again. Lets look at this and see how important this is. Lots of times people will come along and they're all upset and crying, and they're wondering if God will forgive them; 'I don't think God will forgive me.' That's why I'm starting out with the great sins; to show you that, yes, God will forgive you upon repentance!

Exodus 33:12: "And Moses said to the LORD, 'Behold, You say to me, "Bring up this people." And You have not told me whom You will send with me. Yet, You have said, "I know you by name, and you have also found grace in My sight." Now, therefore, I pray You, if I have found grace in Your sight, make me see now Your way, that I may know You, that I may find grace in Your sight. And consider that this nation is Your people.' And He said, 'My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest'" (vs 12-14).

After they did after that, they took the meeting tent and moved it outside the camp. What was also outside the camp? Christ (Heb. 13)! He was crucified outside the camp. And also outside the camp when the temple was built, was the Miphkad Altar where all the sin offerings were burnt to ashes.

Verse 18: "And he said, 'I beseech You, show me Your glory.'"

Verse 20: "And He said, 'You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live.'" Too powerful!

Verse 21: "And the LORD said, 'Behold, there is a place by Me, and you shall stand upon a rock. And it will be, while My glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and will cover you with My hand while I pass by. And I will take away My hand, and you shall see My back parts. But My face shall not be seen'" (vs 21-23).

Exodus 34:1: "And the LORD said to Moses, 'Cut out two tablets of stone like the first ones. And I will write upon the tablets the words that were in the first tablets, which you broke. And be ready in the morning, and come up in the morning to Mount Sinai, and present yourself there to Me on the top of the mountain" (vs 1-2). So, he did!

Verse 5: "And the LORD came down in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD. And the LORD passed by before him and proclaimed, 'The LORD, the LORD God…'" (vs 5-6).

Notice that in spite of everything… How many of those people sinned so badly that they deserved the second death? But God did not bring it upon them! Exo. 34 is good to remember if you're talking to someone who is trying to convert you to Protestantism, or they don't like the Old Testament.

Verse 6: "And the LORD passed by before him and proclaimed, 'The LORD, the LORD God merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy to the thousandth generation…'" (vs 6-7). There won't be a thousand generations from the beginning to the end.

"…forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but Who will by no means clear the guilty… [the unrepentant] …visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, to the third and to the fourth generation" (v 7).

How does God do that? Let's see the ones to whom this comes, "…to the third and to the fourth generation." That doesn't mean just any third and fourth generation! We find this concerning the second commandment:

Exodus 20:4: "You shall not make for yourselves any graven image… [Isn't that what they just did?] …or any likeness of anything that is in the heavens above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters under the earth. You shall not bow yourself down to them… [Isn't that what they did?] …nor serve them, for I, the LORD your God am a jealous God…" (vs 4-5).

God doesn't want us to have jealousy, why is He jealous? Because there is nothing greater than God, and attempt to make something equal to Him is ridiculous!

"…visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands of those who love Me and keep My commandments" (vs 5-6).

I heard Michael Savage, and he's pretty religious in his own way, and he told some of these people in Washington, D.C., that they needed to get a Bible and read it. He also said that this whole nation is 'sick from the head to the foot.' I wonder where he got that? Right here in Isa. 1!

  • How many times does God call 'heaven and earth to record' and back up what He says?
  • What did He say about not abolishing the 'Law and the Prophets'?
  • I tell you that heaven and earth shall perish, but My words shall never perish!

Isaiah 1:2: "
Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth; for the LORD has spoken…" How many times did God speak? Magnify that all the way down to our day!

"…'I have reared and brought up children, but they have rebelled against Me…. [How can they be so stupid?] …The ox knows his owner, and the donkey his master's crib; but Israel does not know Me; My people do not understand'" (vs 2-3).

Doesn't that perfectly epitomize all the children of Israel of the modern ten tribes today? In the UK they're all like 'chickens with their heads cut off' trying to get out of Brexit. Germany is sitting over there saying, 'We've got revenge for WWII.'

  • Why does that have to happen?
  • Who's going to rise up out of there? The final beast!

All of this is prophecy being fulfilled! The Brits don't know what to do!

Verse 4: "Ah, sinful nation, a people burdened with iniquity…"—that's what's wrong with us!

I've done some Church at Home on witchcraft—Was Jesus a Sorcerer?—even witches are saying that Jesus was a sorcerer, and the Bible is a book of magic. I've got another one coming called Shades of Witchcraft! What is that? I'll let you watch it!

"…a seed of evildoers, children who deal corruptly! They have forsaken the LORD; they have provoked the Holy One of Israel to anger; they have gone away backward. Why should you be stricken any more?…." (vs 4-5).

Look at this nation! Why do you want it to get any worse? Like I said with abortion, there are about 55-million mothers who have had abortions, that they need to repent, and all the men that went along with it and everything with that. That would be something!

Now, there is a greater movement here recently to have no abortion if there's a heartbeat. So, you have to back it down. Just think, this nation would go to civil war if Trump stood up and said that he was signing an executive order: no more abortions—period—under any circumstances! He'd be assassinated and we'd have a civil war!

Look at what it brings, v 4: "…they have gone away backward. Why should you be stricken any more? You will revolt more and more; the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint" (vs 4-5). If that doesn't describe the heads of the nations of the 12 tribes of Israel, I do not know!

Verse 6: "From the sole of the foot even to the top of the head there is no soundness in it; only wounds and bruises and putrefying sores; they have not been closed, nor bound up, nor soothed with ointment. Your country is a desolation, your cities are burned with fire…" (vs 6-7).

We've seen that over and over! I remember reading this in 1969. Remember what was going on? Riots! Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Baltimore burning! We were told that we were going to flee in 1972, so we looked at that and said, 'Look at how prophecy is being fulfilled.' You need to be careful, that may be one of the cycles, not the final.

"…Strangers devour your land right in your very presence…" (v 7). How many foreign nations own how much of the U.S., it's land, buildings and industry. Look at 7-Elevens and gas stations; absolutely correct.

  • How about in banking?
  • How about in the Stock Market?
  • How about with Treasury Bills?

The $22-trillion have bills somewhere that someone is holding. What if they all agree together all at once and say, 'We're tired of all of this with America telling us what to do, let's cash in all of our T-Bills all at once. This nation will be history!

Verse 8: "And the daughter of Zion is left as a booth in a vineyard, like a hut in a garden of cucumbers, like a besieged city."

In other words, nothing is controlled! Everything is just overrun! Verse 9 applies to this nation today concerning the people of God. That's why it's important that we pay full attention to what God has said and not lay back and take it easy because everything is there for us.

Verse 9: "Except the LORD of hosts had left us a very small remnant, we would have been as Sodom; we would have become like Gomorrah."

What happened to them? Almost like the first atomic blast! BOOM! Sulfur and fire just coming down out of heaven!

Verse 10: "Hear the Word of the LORD, rulers of Sodom…"

Who's one of the up and coming Democrat candidates for president. A homosexual candidate from South Bend, Indiana, who is mayor of South Bend.

"…give ear to the Law of our God, people of Gomorrah" (v 10). Then God says, 'What's the purpose of all your religions?' Nothing!

Verse 14: "Your new moons… [the holidays of this world] …and your appointed feasts My soul hates; they are a trouble to Me; I am weary to bear them."

Sounds like when the Christmas season is around, you go in the store and you get weary to hear all of that.

Verse 15: "And when you spread forth your hands, I will hide My eyes from you; yea, when you make many prayers, I will not hear; your hands are full of blood. Wash yourselves… [repent] …make yourselves clean; put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes; cease to do evil; learn to do good; seek judgment, reprove the oppressor. Judge the orphan; plead for the widow" (vs 15-17).

That's what we need to understand that forgiveness is so mightily important, and we're going to see that God is always ready to forgive with repentance!

Verse 18: "'Come now, and let us reason together,' says the LORD. 'Though your sins are as scarlet…'"

Think about that. Can you think of two kings: one of Israel and one of Judah. Who was the man who was most wicked? Manasseh for Judah; Ahab for Israel! Ahab even sent Elijah to condemn him. Right while Elijah was going back, Ahab was repenting in sackcloth and ashes, and God told him to turn around and 'see my servant and tell him that it's not going to happen right away.'

"…'They shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool. If… [we should have capitalized and bolded every IF in the Bible] …you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land; but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured with the sword'; for the mouth of the LORD has spoken it" (vs 18-20). When God says something, it's going to happen!

In Heb. 9-10 it says that we have the 'Perfect Sacrifice' for our sins and the sins of the world, and that is Christ! And we will see that we all need forgiveness every day, because God is working with our mind to convert our mind and heart, and to get rid of the evil within! I guarantee, tell you for sure, that every single one of us sin in our mind, one way or another, every day.

Matt. 6—here is the basic outline of prayer every day. Understand that vain repetitions God doesn't want. Needed repetitions God wants; they're necessary. Remember the widow who came to the judge and the judge said, 'No, get out of here.' Finally he said, 'She's wearing me out, 'I'll judge her and give her a little vengeance.' That's the same way with us!

After Jesus says, 'Don't be like the hypocrites who pray to just be heard.'

Matthew 6:9: "Therefore, you are to pray after this manner… [or outline] …'Our Father, Who is in heaven, hallowed be Your name.'"

Everything goes to the Father through Christ. Why? Because we're the children of the Father, we're not the children of Christ! We are the brethren of Christ. Think on that with your calling.

That's something, the great Sovereign Ruler of the whole universe! If you need a little inspiration go online—and if you can project it on your television do it—look at all the stars, galaxies and everything that God has created. Then think about even the most finite little thing of the smallest part of the atom. It think there's something smaller than an atom; I don't know what they call it, but there are particles so small that they pass through the earth uninhibited. God made all of that from the macro to the micro!

Verse 10: "Your kingdom come…" That means we're also keep our mind on the Kingdom, because:

Verse 33: "But as for you, seek first the Kingdom of God…" What does this do on a daily basis? This means:

  • let Your love
  • let Your Truth
  • let Your forgiveness
  • everything about You
  • Your Kingdom

come to us this day, so we can live for You!

Verse 10: "…Your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven." That's a big one! How many times do we do things that are not the will of God? We need to repent!

Verse 11: "Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our debts…" (vs 11-12).

This does not mean your credit cards or your mortgage! This means your indebtedness to God because you have sinned, and payment is made by the sacrifice of Christ!

It says, 'Forgive us our sins' (Luke 11). "…as we also forgive our debtors" (v 12).

The important things we're going to find is forgiving one another, and sometimes that's really, really hard to do, especially if it has been really nasty! Or perceived to be really nasty.

Verse 13: "And lead us not into temptation…"—from within by our sinful mind, or from Satan the devil. But in either case temptations give you a choice! Tribulation doesn't give you any choice, it just comes, no choice about it!

"…but rescue us from the evil one…. [God is the only One Who can do that] …For Yours is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen." (v 13).

(go to the next track)

I forgot the opening commercials: We have a full study on  Forgiveness, every aspect of forgiveness: The messages are:

  • Forgiveness
  • How We Conduct Our Lives  & Forgiveness
  • Forgive That You May be Forgiven
  • Are You God's Policeman?
  • Don't Carry Passed Baggage
  • How to Know Your Sins are Forgiven
  • Repentance
  • Love, Mercy and Forgiveness
  • A Key to Answered Prayer #1 & 2

That should help us, and we need it with the Passover coming up, especially living in a world where there are so many things that appear good, but are actually evil.

Here's how God looks at us when He forgives our sins. Of course, that has to be repentance that is sincere, truthful, honest, and all of that sort of thing. That's why you'll hear me say, probably here, if you are Catholic and went to the confession booth and confessed your sins to the priest, do you think you would tell him every little nasty thing that you did? Of course not!

I like the one when he opened the little window and asked, 'Are you ready to confess your sins?' The guy looks through the screen and says, 'Yes, father, let's start with yours!'

Psalm 32:1—this is also quoted in Rom. 4: "Blessed is the man whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered…. [to get rid of] …Blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile" (vs 1-2).

There's only one man in the Bible recorded that he had 'no guile, an Israelite indeed,' and that was Nathaniel. Only one! Think of that in the whole Bible! That shows you how evil the human mind is!

Verse 3: "When I kept silent, my bones wore away through my groaning all the day long…. [David was really troubled with whatever it was that afflicted him!] …For by day and by night Your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer. Selah" (vs 3-4).

  • How come we go through some of these periods of being really down in depression?
  • Why?
  • Why would God do that?
  • So that we would repent!

When you know things are bad, then you get depressed.

Verse 5: "I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I have not hidden. I said, 'I will confess my transgression to the LORD,' and You forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah." That's quite a thing! If you got really something down deep that you need to get rid of, then start with that.

Isn't it interesting that David did not offer a sacrifice for his sin with Bathsheba and her husband Uriah the Hittite? Psa. 51 is the absolute greatest description of repentance and what it all means, and what God is going to do. Here he was, and God just gave him the blessing that 'I am going to choose your seed where you will always have a man sitting on the throne of Israel' through all time. David wanted to build a house for God and he was told, 'No, you're not going to build it, but your son will build it.'

After the blessing, then came the episode with Bathsheba and Uriah the Hittite, and as king misusing his authority. The one I always wondered about is Joab, who knew every sin of the king. He knew that the order was absolutely a usurpation of the authority of the king, but he was bound to obey.

Of course, this went on over a period of time, and when he's finally convicted of it and he repented, David said:

Psalm 51:1: "Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your loving kindness… [He's not saying 'according to how I'm repenting'!] …according to the greatness of Your compassion, blot out my transgressions."

We need a spiritual action in our heart and mind. What about the one who grabbed a hold of the horns of the altar and he wasn't forgiven? Because there wasn't really deep repentance!

Notice what happens when you really come to the knowledge and understanding of the sin you need to repent of. It's just like here:

Verse 3: "For I acknowledge my transgressions… [plural] …and my sin is ever before me." I don't think David forgot it all the rest of his life."

That's what we are to do with sin when we repent! When we remember it, let us learn a lesson from it; not dwell on it.

Verse 4: "Against You, You only, have I sinned…" Even though he killed Uriah, even though Bathsheba got pregnant, he was sinning against God!

"…and done evil in Your sight, that You might be justified when You speak…" (v 4). Remember that the penalty was 'your whole household is going to be against you the rest of your life'; it started out real quickly with the rebellion of Absalom.

"…and be in the right when You judge. Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity…" (vs 4-5). That doesn't mean his mother was an adulteress!

That means the nature of human beings is that you were born with a sinful mind with the 'law of sin and death in you.' That's evidenced when you see children, especially when it's over property rights.

"…and in sin did my mother conceive me" (v 5). Here's the whole point of:

  • repentance
  • forgiveness
  • having our sins blotted away and not imputed to us

Verse 6: "Behold You desire Truth in the inward parts; and in the hidden part…" Inside! I tell you, the cleaning and the washing of our mind is a really daily thing that has to happen when we come to understand it completely.

"…You shall make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness that the bones, which You have broken, may rejoice. Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities" (vs 6-9).

Here's the reason for repentance and forgiveness, because God acts to do this, v 10: "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Cast me not away…" (vs 10-11).

This is why we have these things recorded for us. This helps us. If you're kind of in a rut and you don't know what to pray about, take the Psalms and get on your knees, open them up and read them and pray about them as you go. You will find that you will really be inspired by God's Spirit to help you bring forth a prayer that is necessary.

Psalm 25:1: "To You, O LORD, do I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in You; do not let me be ashamed, let not my enemies triumph over me. Yea, let none who wait on You be ashamed…" (vs 1-3)—not just on himself, but all who trust!

That's why we need to pray for each other every day. We need to pray for all the brethren every day. And you can pray:

  • O God, be with your brethren
  • help them
  • lift them out of their troubles, difficulties and depression
  • bless them
  • help them

That would be similar to a prayer that you would pray every single day! All of us need the prayers of each other.

"…let them be ashamed who deal treacherously without cause. Show me Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths" (vs 3-4).

  • we learn when we repent
  • we learn when we confess our sins

Verse 5: "Lead me in Your Truth… [Your Word is the Truth] …and teach me… [that's how we are taught every day; we will be learning every day] …for You are the God of my salvation; on You do I wait all the day long. Remember, O LORD, Your tender mercies and Your loving kindness, for they have been of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions…" (vs 5-7).

  • What does this tell you? David still remembered them!
  • Can you still remember some of the things you did as a kid that weren't good?
  • Did you ever do something that was really quite bad and you escaped without any notice by anyone?
  • How did that happen?

God was merciful to you at that time and didn't want you to get caught in it. So, you remember that of old, and let that be a lesson to keep repenting.

Verse 8: "Good and upright is the LORD; therefore, He will teach sinners in the way." That's how we are taught and learn!

Verse 9: "The meek He will guide in judgment; and the meek He will teach His way. All the paths of the LORD are mercy and Truth to those who keep His covenant and His testimonies" (vs 9-10).

Think about that you may have sins you have to repent of. Maybe you know that you should have repented of them quite a while ago, but you haven't.

  • How is God going to look on that?

Ask yourself:

  • Why have I taken so long to come to repentance?
  • Psalm 86 answers the question!

Psalm 86:1: "Bow down Your ear, O LORD, answer me, for I am poor and needy. Preserve my soul, for I am Holy; O You my God, save Your servant who trusts in You. Be merciful to me, O LORD, for I cry unto You all day long. Rejoice the soul of Your servant, for to You, O LORD, do I lift up my soul, for You, LORD, are good and ready to forgive… [God is waiting for repentance] …and rich in mercy to all those who call upon You. Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer, and attend to the voice of my supplications. In the day of my trouble I will call upon You, for You will answer me" (vs 1-7).

Let's come to the New Testament and see how all of this comes together on a continuous basis. When we read this we also find that John includes himself in it. Now, John 1 gives us the perspective and keeps our mind on:

  • Christ and God the Father
  • what Christ is doing
  • how He's acting with us in our lives

And He does! He's the Head of the Church. This is true: all who are teachers and ministers must yield to God and be in repentance, especially when you are teaching! You are to bring the Word of God to the people of God; that's how God set it up. We are stewards to do what God wants us to do to serve and feed the flock. That's how God made it happen!

John starts out how he experienced everything about Christ's life; 1-John 1:1: "That which was from the beginning…" there are only two other places that it talks about this: John 1 and Gen. 1.

"…that which we have heard… [everything of the teachings of Christ] …that which we have seen with our own eyes… [they saw Him; every single day they were with Him] …that which we observed for ourselves…" (v 1).

Have you ever seen a young child when they're just in the arms of the mother and father, and they're walking in the store. Those children are learning by having their eyes wide open and looking and staring at everything. This is what it means "...we observed for ourselves…" It could actually mean gawked! In other words, they were so, at times, mesmerized at being with Christ that all they could do is just look, like a young child with their eyes transfixed on Him.

"…and our own hands handled, concerning the Word of Life; (and the life was manifested, and we have seen, and are bearing witness, and are reporting to you the eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested to us)" (vs 1-2).

They didn't understand it at first, but later—toward the end of their life, and I imagine John was in his 80s when he wrote this—they looked back and see; 'WOW, that was a fantastic thing!' That's what John is talking about.

He brings all of us into it, v 3: "that which we have seen and have heard we are reporting to you in order that you also may have fellowship with us; for the fellowship—indeed, our fellowship—is with the Father and with His own Son Jesus Christ."

That's how to start out when you are coming to God and thinking of the greatness of God and what He did!

Verse 4: "These things we are also writing to you, so that your joy may be completely full. And this is the message that we have heard from Him and are declaring to you: that God is Light, and there is no darkness at all in Him" (vs 4-5).

John is beginning to fight all the heresies that were coming into the Church. Now, here is the difference between those who are truly God's and those who are truly not of God!

Verse 6: "If we proclaim that we have fellowship with Him… [because John said we do] …but we are walking in the darkness…"—the way of the world and Satan; a lot of Protestants ought to read that.

Notice what you are doing, the worst kind of deception; "…we are lying to ourselves…" Notice that he's including himself in this. The words kind of lying is lying to yourself!That you believe a lie so much that you won't let and truth in!

"…and we are not practicing the Truth…. [and 'Your Word is the Truth'] …However, if we walk in the Light… [which we do because we're Christ's] …as He is in the Light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His own Son, cleanses us from all sin." From all sin, every bit of it!

That's why if you have something you need to repent of, go repent! God is waiting! He's ready! I don't know if He's going to say to you, 'What took you so long?' But He's there to help you!

Verse 8: "If we say that we do not have sin… ['I'm right all the time and I've never done anything wrong] …we are deceiving ourselves…" If you lie to yourself, you deceive yourself!

Let's look at one the greatest deceptions that ever was outside of the attack of Satan and the angels against God. Adolph Hitler!

Even to the very, very end he was deluded into thinking that they would still win, because they had wonder weapons. Look what happened to him.

"…and the Truth is not in us…. ['I'm a good person] …If we confess our own sins… [repentance] …He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar… [because all have sinned and come short of the glory of God] …and His Word is not in us" (vs 8-10).

Lest we get all lifted up in self-righteousness and so condemning of the world that we think we are the only ones. Notice what John says in:

1-John 2:1: "My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And yet, if anyone does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father; Jesus Christ the Righteous."

Jesus is not there at the right hand of God saying, 'Father, look down there, look what he's doing.' The Father is saying, 'I'm waiting for him to repent.' It's not like we think as human beings.

I remember talking to someone who was telling about a time that he was in New Orleans, and he picked up a black man—he had talked to him a time before and  knew that he was demon possessed—so he asked him, 'Why did you demons rebel?' the answer was, 'Because we didn't believe that God was as good and loving as He is!' That is a fantastic answer! Don't ever think that God won't forgive you. Go repent!

It may be a long duration and very carnal, but God will forgive! Why? Because He wants us in the Kingdom! He knows what we are as human beings. A lot of people in the world just keep on sinning because they don't believe that God will forgive them.

I tell you, this thing on witchcraft is really coming hard and heavy. It's like this, whenever you leave God out Satan fills the void. He doesn't fill it with something evil at first. He fills it with something that seems good, and he will convince you that you are right. Therefore, you don't repent.

"…we have an Advocate with the Father; Jesus Christ the Righteous; and He is the propitiation for our sins… [lest we get lifted up in vanity] …and not for our sins only, but also for the sins of the whole world" (vs 1-2)—because God is going to reconcile it!

If you've heard Pastor Jeffers on the news, I watched him preach one time and he said, 'As a good righteous Baptist, there two kinds of people: those who belong to God and those who don't! Those who don't come to God are going to burn in hell forever!' This in 1-John doesn't say that—does it?

Let's see how God continues to work with us. Luke 7 & 11 I really like. Jesus had some run-ins with the scribes and Pharisees, and He even had a meal with them, probably more than what's recorded here. Here's what happened:

Luke 7:36: "Now, one of the Pharisees invited Him to eat with him. And after going into the Pharisee's house, He sat down at the table. And behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew that He was sitting in the Pharisee's house, took an alabaster flask of ointment; and she stood weeping behind Him, and knelt at His feet, and began to wash His feet with her tears and to wipe them with the hairs of her head…" (vs 36-38).

Imagine that happening. Here's all the Pharisees, and probably some Sadducees mixed in there and scribes mixed in there, as well. Here's this Prophet and He's sitting down with them and He didn't wash His hands, and they didn't come and wash His feet.

So, here comes this harlot, and they all knew she was a harlot. She comes with this ointment and begins washing His feet and crying and weeping. They're looking at this:

Verse 39: "But when he saw this, the Pharisee who had invited Him spoke within himself, saying, 'This Man, if He were a prophet, would have known who and what the woman is who is touching Him because she is a sinner.' Then Jesus answered and said to him… [Jesus could read his mind, and knew what he were going to say] …'Simon, I have something to say to you.' And he said, 'Teacher, say on.' 'There were two debtors of a certain creditor; one owed five hundred silver coins, and the other fifty. But when they did not have anything with which to pay him, he forgave them both. Tell Me then, which of them will love him most?'" (vs 39-42).

Simon probably thought that that was an easy one!

Verse 43: "And Simon answered and said, 'I suppose the one whom he forgave the most.' And He said to him, 'You have judged rightly.' And after turning to the woman, He said to Simon, 'Do you see this woman? I came into your house, and you did not provide any water to wash My feet; but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hairs of her head. You did not give Me a kiss; but she, from the time I came in, has not ceased to ardently kiss My feet. You did not anoint My head with oil; but she has anointed My feet with ointment…. [notice how He just absolutely flayed them apart] …For this cause, I tell you, her many sins…" (vs 43-47).

Of course, He would know them, since He can read the mind and every action—good or bad—is recorded in our mind. He would know!

Verse 47: "…have been forgiven because she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, he loves little.' And He said to her, 'Your sins have been forgiven.'"  (vs 47-48).

Notice their attitude. This came on all of them. You can just see them with all of their phylacteries and their nice combed beards. I don't think they were wearing hats while they were eating, but they were all there and everything all setup.

Verse 49: "Then those who were sitting with Him began to say within themselves, 'Who is this, Who even forgives sins?' But He said to the woman, 'Your faith has saved you. Go in peace'" (vs 49-50).

That's how we ought to feel when we come to God. Now let's look at what we need to do with each other.

Remember what Christ said about bringing your gift to the altar and you remember that you have something against your brother, you leave your give and you go get reconciled. That follows right along with:

Matthew 18:15: "So then, if your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault between you and him alone…. [that's the first step]…If he is willing to hear you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not listen, take with you one or two others, so that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he fails to listen to them, tell it to the Church…. [the congregation, not the ministry] …But if he also fails to listen to the Church, let him be to you as the heathen and the tax collector. Truly I say to you, whatever you shall bind on the earth will have already been bound in heaven… [making a decision to correct a wrong] …and whatever you shall loose on the earth will have already been loosed in heaven" (vs 15-18).

You must go to the Word of God for the correct solution one way or the other!

Verse 19: "Again I say to you, that if two of you on earth shall agree concerning any matter that they wish to request, it shall be done for them by My Father, Who is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there, I am in the midst of them" (vs 19-20).

That's more so today than ever before, because we have people here, there and everywhere. Last night at Go to Meeting we had 75 logged in, meaning we have two or three each log in, so that means there were between 150 and 225 that heard the message last night.

Verse 21: "Then Peter came to Him and said, 'Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Until seven times?'" I imagine that he was thinking he was being pretty generous!  Most of would say, 'Don't you ever do that again!'

Verse 22: "Jesus said to him, 'I do not say to you until seven times, but until seventy times seven'"—490! That's showing us the mercy of God!

Verse 23: "Therefore, the Kingdom of Heaven is compared to a man, a certain king, who would take account with his servants. And after he began to reckon, there was brought to him one debtor who owed him ten thousand talents" (vs 23-24)—that's a lot of money!

Verse 25: "But since he did not have anything to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made." That is to work as an indentured servant until you paid the debt!

Verse 26: "Because of this, the servant fell down and worshiped him, saying, 'Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay you all.' And being moved with compassion, the lord of that servant released him, and forgave him the debt" (vs 26-27).

When you've been forgiven, what does your attitude need to be: thankfulness and forgiveness!

Notice what the servant did, v 28: "Then that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants, who owed him a hundred silver coins; and after seizing him, he choked him, saying, 'Pay me what you owe.' As a result, his fellow servant fell down at his feet and pleaded with him, saying, 'Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.' But he would not listen; instead, he went and cast him into prison, until he should pay the amount that he owed" (vs 28-30).

Verse 31: "Now, when his fellow servants saw the things that had taken place, they were greatly distressed; and they went to their lord and related all that had taken place. Then his lord called him and said to him…" (vs 31-32).

Remember, he had forgiven everything, so the lesson here is that if we don't forgive from the heart, we won't be forgiven!

"…'You wicked servant, I forgave you all that debt, because you implored me. Were you not also obligated to have compassion on your fellow servant, even as I had compassion on you?'" (vs 32-33).

Don't we have an obligation to forgive one another? Yes!

Verse 34: "And in anger, his lord delivered him up to the tormentors, until he should pay all that he owed to him…. [now, the most important verse in this chapter]: …Likewise shall My heavenly Father also do to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother's offenses from the heart" (vs 34-35).

All of this is what is necessary for when we come to the Passover. Let's see that put into practice in Gen. 50. This was after Jacob died, and after the children of Israel had come in and were treated so well by Joseph. Remember what Joseph did to his brothers. He put them through a couple shenanigans as kind of payback for what they did to him. But he forgave them all!

After they took the body of Jacob, Genesis 50:14: "And Joseph returned to Egypt, he and his brothers, and all that went up with him to bury his father, after he had buried his father. And when Joseph's brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, 'Joseph will perhaps hate us, and will certainly repay us all the evil which we did to him'" (vs 14-15).

Think abut how bad that was, and think about the evil that they did to their father Jacob by bringing back the clothes with goats blood on it saying that Joseph is dead! For seventeen years they kept this up.

Verse 16: "And they sent a message to Joseph, saying, 'Your father commanded before he died, saying, "Thus shall you say to Joseph, 'I beseech you now, forgive the trespass of your brothers and their sin, for they did evil to you.'" And please now forgive the trespass of the servants of the God of your father.' And Joseph wept when they spoke to him. And his brothers also went and fell down before his face. And they said, 'Behold, we are your servants.' And Joseph said to them, 'Do not fear, for am I in the place of God? But as for you, you thought evil against me, but God meant it for good to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save a great many people alive. And now do not fear. I will nourish you and your little ones.' And he comforted them and spoke to their hearts" (vs 16-21).

  • What has been done to us that we need to forgive?
  • What if the person never asks for forgiveness? You still forgive them!
  • Did Jesus forgive them while He was on the cross? Yes! They didn't ask for forgiveness!

This is so that we will be in right standing with God! You can't hold grudges, anger and hatred against anyone! That's why when we come to the Passover we need to prepare for it by:

  • confessing our sins
  • drawing close to God
  • acknowledging what we have done
  • forgiving whatever anyone has done to us regardless

Even if they don't know you're forgiving them. Maybe it will turn around for real good one day.

Don't forget the study on Forgiveness.

Scriptural References:

  • Luke 23:34
  • Luke 24:45-48
  • Matthew 26:27-28
  • Mark 2:1-12
  • Exodus 32:8, 26-35
  • Exodus 33:12-14, 18, 20-23
  • Exodus 34:1-2, 5-7
  • Exodus 20:4-6
  • Isaiah 1:2-10, 14-20
  • Matthew 6:9-10, 33, 10-13
  • Psalm 32:1-5
  • Psalm 51:1, 3-11
  • Psalm 25:1-10
  • Psalm 86:1-7
  • 1 John 1:1-10
  • 1 John 2:1-2
  • Luke 7:36-50
  • Matthew 18:15-35
  • Genesis 50:14-21

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • John 5
  • Exodus 31
  • Acts 8
  • Hebrews 13; 9; 10
  • Luke 11
  • Romans 4
  • John 1
  • Genesis 1

Also referenced:

Church at Home:

  • Was Jesus a Sorcerer?
  • Shades of Witchcraft

Sermon Series (with Transcript Book & CD): Forgiveness

Transcribed: 3/4/19

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