Reprinted with permission from Truth & Tidings Magazine
Job, the oldest book in the Bible, provides us the record of a man who demonstrates faithfulness to God, integrity and honor in the face of overwhelming loss, personal misery, and loneliness. Job is described as "one that feared God and eschewed evil" yet he was a man completely in touch with the reality of his iniquities – his sin.
He realized the following facts about his sin: a) it is a universal human condition – upon all people in all places; b) one is marked by God for their sin and held accountable for it; c) sin separates a person from a righteous God; and d) the Redeemer has come to atone for sin and through Him one can be justified with God.
So what do the insights of a man from the Bible’s oldest book have to do with you today? The truth is that God’s principles about our sin, our iniquities and their effect on our relationship with Him are unchanging. As these principles existed in Job’s day, so they exist today and will forever … unalterable, unchanging, irrevocable principles that must be confronted. The principles that Job recognized are described further throughout the Word of God.
The Apostle Paul, the great first century evangelist, writes about the universal truth of our natural state before God in Romans 3:23. This text states, "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God." All of humanity, from birth, is under the banner of sin and its curse of guilt and punishment. He further writes that the human state is not one of choice but of heredity … that as a result of Adam’s disobedience in the early days of human history, "sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned." Our sins before God carry a personal, eternal penalty. Offences cannot go unpunished and "the wages of sin is death" (Rom 6:23).
Each of us is marked by God for our sin. The psalm-writer reminds us in his prayer that every iniquity, every wrong, every offence is set before God and that nothing is hid from His view. "Thou hast set our iniquities before Thee, our secret sins in the light of Thy countenance" (Psa 90:8). The bright light of God’s presence exposes every sin in our lives and in our hearts regardless of our attempts to hide them. Nothing is hid from God.
As a result of our iniquities, we have been distanced from God and His grace. The prophet Isaiah tells us that our "iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear" (Isa 59:2). Our sin is the barrier between us and God.
Even those acts of kindness and deeds of generosity we may undertake do nothing to change our state before a holy God. Again, Isaiah writes that, "we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags" (Isa 64:6).
Enter the blessed truth of the gospel. Against the backdrop of our sin, our offence, and our guilt, God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, the Redeemer of Job’s writing came to earth to personally and completely resolve the penalty of our iniquities and to bring us back to God. The prophet Isaiah writes, "He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed" (Isa 53:5)
The cross was the setting for the resolution of human sin before God. It was there that the Lord Jesus Christ, the holy Son of God, was wounded, was bruised, was chastised, and was condemned on your behalf and mine. God was pleased in the sacrifice of His Son and has raised Him from death and brought Him back to Heaven. All who acknowledge their iniquities before God, and accept the sacrifice of Christ as the payment for their penalty and guilt, are forgiven, and a place in Heaven is reserved for them. Have your sins been forgiven?
It is God’s promise that for the one who accepts Christ and His payment for sins’ penalty, "their sins and iniquities will I remember no more" (Heb 10:17).
Accept God’s ultimate solution for your sins. Have peace with God through His Son.
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