Must God forgive me?

Congregants worship in a Dutch Restored Reformed churchDoornspijk

In him (Jesus Christ) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.

Ephesians 1:7.

“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). But the passage continues, promising justification “by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (v.24). This wonderful message applies to all without any exception. But only those who put their faith in Christ benefit from it.

Among the congregation that heard this message was a young student who listened attentively to every word. She admitted that she was guilty before God, like everyone else. But she could not understand why redemption was only possible through Jesus Christ. “Doesn’t God forgive all guilt, if we ask Him to sincerely? Why do I need Christ?” she asked the preacher. – “Because God forgives sins only on the ground of Christ’s atoning sacrifice. Otherwise you would have to remain estranged from God.”, he explained.

“God must forgive me, as I see it. He is love!” she stated provocatively. – “God “must” do only one thing: judge sin,” the evangelist stressed, “for God is not only love, but also light. He is holy, and cannot tolerate sin. But if someone claims the redeeming work of Jesus Christ for himself by faith, then God “must” indeed forgive him, because Christ bore the punishment as our substitute. Then God acts righteously by justifying whoever believes in Jesus, pronouncing him free of all guilt. If Christ stands in for you, then God can and must forgive you.” (cf. Romans 3:26).

Image: By Rubenf – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,