Pastor Luther stunned me yesterday at the 9am service at Victory Christian Fellowship Galleria. It was the first time Cathy and I listened to him preach, and this man obviously has the gift. Wow. Amazing.
His message was taken from Matthew 6, a continuation of the series on Teach Us to Pray. His verse? "Forgive us our debts," from which he took the content, the Four Powerful Qualities of God's Forgiveness. The fact of the matter is this: the power, penalty, and presence of sin was broken by Christ on the cross. In six agonizing (but short) hours, Jesus paid the price, and in breathing his last, "It is finished," called out a triumphant message to Heaven (We did it!), Hell (I have saved my children from your evil!), and Humanity (I love you this much!).
No matter how crazy we may be, we can and will be forgiven if we ask for it in sincerity.
The four qualities of God's forgiveness are these:
God's forgiveness is instant. 1 John 1:9 tells us that God is willing to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. He doesn't give us a time limit, doesn't set borders or strict rules, and doesn't let us simmer in guilt (we do a fine job of that ourselves, don't we?).
God's forgiveness is ready. Available and inexhaustible, there's nothing we can do that God cannot forgive if we're truly sorry. [Interesting point: if one is a believer who turns his back on God, isn't he supposed to be beyond God's forgiveness? There's a Bible verse or two on that, but I think God can look even beyond that and forgive.] Ps 103:11-12.
God's forgiveness is free. Unlike local policemen, you can't bribe him, buy him, or beg from him - because there really is no need to anyway - we're forgiven and justified by grace. Roms. 3:23.
God's forgiveness is complete. It's all you'll ever need. Jn 19:30.