Divine forgiveness is a spiritual process whereby a repentant sinner (law-breaker) may receive total pardon from the Almighty and set free from sin’s death penalty. It is a holy gift in the truest sense of the term and is freely obtainable from God upon request. But even though forgiveness is a free gift which cannot be earned in any way, it is, nevertheless, made available to us by the God of Israel at enormous cost to Himself. And no doubt throughout eternity, earth’s ransomed host will ever wonder at Yahweh’s amazing love and generosity as the full measure of the price He paid to save us from eternal death becomes more and more evident.
It is also a fact that there is not a single sin in the whole catalogue of evil which is unforgivable – provided the requirements of repentance are fully met. All sinners, especially those who have plummeted to the very depths of corruption, would do well to remember this fact. Yes, it is time to seek forgiveness of God before it is eternally too late. In other words, if a sinner genuinely repents of sin – any sin – and seeks forgiveness, he will find it, no matter how evil may be his record and however corrupt his past. Yet, by the same token, the Scriptures make it abundantly clear that if forgiveness is not sought and Yahweh’s offer of mercy not accepted, then the Most High will in no wise acquit the guilty, but will punish the offender, no matter how trivial his offence may appear to be. The Unforgivable Sin, therefore, is not one particular type of sin which God is somehow unable or unwilling to pardon: rather it is the sin that is wilfully and persistently cherished; the sin that will not be given up, even in the face of all the injunctions of Holy Scripture and the strong conviction brought on by the Holy Spirit. Continued rejection of spiritual conviction amounts to blasphemy and a sin becomes “unforgivable” when it is blatantly indulged in and forgiveness not even requested.
- Since every sin is, in the final analysis, committed against God, it is from Him that forgiveness must be requested. If another human being is involved then that person’s pardon should also be sought.
(2 Chronicles 7:14, Daniel 9:8-9, Psalm 130:4, Matthew 5:23-24)
- Yahweh’s channel of divine mercy and pardon is His Son Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus the Christ). It is by faith in Him that every spiritual blessing is received.
(Acts 5:31, Acts 13:38)
- The Almighty is more willing to forgive sin than we can possibly imagine and His urgent appeals in this direction are proof of this.
(2 Peter 3:9, Isaiah 55:6-7)
- Every sin, no matter how grievous, can be forgiven, if forgiveness is sought the only condition of pardon being that we confess our sins and be willing to forsake them.
(Isaiah 1:16-20, Ezekiel 18:21, Jeremiah 33:8)
- On the other hand, any sin may become the unforgivable sin if divine conviction is persistently resisted and forgiveness refused.
(Numbers 14:18, Exodus 20:5, Nahum 1:3)
- A person’s own forgiveness by the Most High is influenced by his/her willingness to forgive others. Those who refuse to forgive their fellow mortals, especially when genuine reconciliation is sought, are hardly likely to find forgiveness from God.
(Matthew 6:12, Mark 11:26)
- By some strange process Yahweh also has the ability to forget. He is able to overwrite His mind and put all our sins behind His back. The Scriptures tell of a time when He will erase the record of our sins from His own memory and also from ours.
(Psalm 32:1-2, Isaiah 44:21-22, Jeremiah 31:34)
- When a person is forgiven and begins to walk in the path of righteousness he/she will go on to become the recipient of many spiritual blessings. This is the inheritance of every true believer.
(Matthew 11:28-30, Psalm 1:1-6, Deuteronomy 28:1-14, 1 Corinthians 2:9)
- Just like repentance, forgiveness has a time limit and one day will become unobtainable. So do not neglect the Most High’s offer of salvation. Millions are going to find out – too late – that they have thrown away the gift of eternal life. It must not happen to you.
(Zephaniah 2:2-3, Hebrews 12:16-17)
- It is good to remember that though the Eternal’s rulership is established upon the principles of divine law and justice, He has nevertheless made ample provision for forgiveness by Himself occupying the Mercy Seat. And it is at the Mercy Seat, which is over and above the law, that we learn to love God for what He really is, our kind and merciful Heavenly Father.
(Numbers 7:89, Exodus 25:20-22, Hebrews 4:15-16)
Author: David B Loughran
Stewarton Bible School, Stewarton, Scotland