As I read through the book of Colossians this morning, I can’t help but wish that I had time to write blog posts about every verse. This is an incredible letter written by the Apostle Paul to the church at Colossae and it is saturated with powerful principles.

The following two verse paint a wonderful picture of how God forgave everyone who puts their trust in Jesus for salvation.

Colossians 2:13-14 (CSB) “And when you were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, he made you alive with him and forgave us all our trespasses. He erased the certificate of debt, with its obligations, that was against us and opposed to us, and has taken it away by nailing it to the cross.”

Let me break down the truths in these verses.

“And when you were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, …”

This simply states the facts. When we were born, we weren’t “blank slates.” We certainly weren’t angels. We were born separated from God because we are descendants of the first man (Adam) who broke fellowship with God by violating His command.

So, we are born “dead,” meaning that we are born separated from the life of God. Further, we were on our way to a Christ-less eternity in Hell.

“Uncircumcision of your flesh” simply means that we were not set apart from God. When we were born, there was no sign on our body or heart that God had done a supernatural work within us to set us apart for Him..

“…he made you alive with him and forgave us all our trespasses…”

God loves us so much that He made it possible for us to flee the deplorable spiritual condition into which we were born.

When we trust in Jesus Christ for salvation (John 3:16), God Himself enters us. His life comes within us and we have eternal life (the life of the Eternal One now resides inside of us).

But a Holy God cannot inhabit a dirty vessel. He had to deal with our sins.

So, what did He do at the moment we placed our trust in Jesus? “He forgave us all our trespasses.” After all, it was Him and His righteous standard that we had violated. He alone could forgive us … and He did that very thing the moment we believed.

“…He erased the certificate of debt, with its obligations, that was against us and opposed to us,…”

The previous section of the verse just qualifies the truths that came before it.

They tell us that our sins (violations of God’s perfect law) created a debt, a debt we couldn’t pay. But, God in His grace, forgave us our sin debt against Him the moment we placed our trust in Jesus.

“…and has taken it away by nailing it to the cross.”

These words are absolutely incredible! They create a powerful word picture!

The first century Romans wouldn’t simply put someone on the cross. They also placed a board above them on which was written their crime. So, if you were to walk up to a first century crucifixion, you would see someone hanging on a cross but you could also read the crime they had committed that merited the death penalty.

So, what crimes did Jesus do that put Him on the cross? Nothing. He was the only person to walk planet earth who did not sin.

We are told in the above verse what God nailed to the cross above Jesus’ head. On that placard is the list of offenses that merited the death penalty.

What was on that placard?

Just read those two verses again!

Colossians 2:13-14 (CSB) “And when you were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, he made you alive with him and forgave us all our trespasses. He erased the certificate of debt, with its obligations, that was against us and opposed to us, and has taken it away by nailing it to the cross.”

It was the jealous thoughts we had a few days ago. The harsh words we said a couple of days ago. The lustful thoughts. The unloving attitude. The failure to submit to spiritual authority.

If we are someone who has trusted (or will trust) in Jesus for salvation, then every single sin we have ever committed and ever will commit were nailed to the cross.

Our sins couldn’t simply be overlooked. A Holy God had to make sure that our offenses got what they required … His wrath, separation from Him, and a death penalty.

Jesus bore on the cross what you and I would have experienced for eternity in Hell. But, because of what He did on the cross for us (dying as our substitute) and because we have trusted in Him (if you really have), all of our sins were placed upon Him and He paid our sin debt.

Friend, if you have nothing else to be excited about this day, this is enough to put a pep in your step. Why not take these two verses with you today and reflect on what God has done for you.

And then thank and praise Him for it.