7 Minute Read + Scripture readings

Today’s Bible Reading:

Leviticus 4
Psalms 1-2
Proverbs 19
Colossians 2

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

“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.”
Colossians 2:14 (CSB)

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

How wonderful is it that we can simply go to the Lord and ask for forgiveness after we engage in disobedience to His commands! He is so gracious as to allow us to be fully pardoned and brought back into fellowship by simply agreeing with Him that what we did was wrong and turning from it (repent).

1 John 1:9 (CSB): “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Yet, we have taken what is free and made it cheap. God’s forgiveness is free but I wonder if we don’t take it for granted. I wonder if periodically we presume upon God’s grace by whimsically asking for forgiveness when we might not have any intentions of killing that sin in our life (Romans 8:13).

How are our sins dealt with?

To answer that question, all we need to do is read Colossians 2:14 all over again.

Colossians 2:14 (CSB): “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.”

If we could step back in time and view the barbaric practice of a 1st century Roman crucifixion, we would get physically nauseous. Only animals, who derived pleasure from human suffering, could have come up with such a practice.

But one thing that those Romans did to bring at least some decorum to the procedure was to nail the crime to the cross. If we could see one of those men nailed or tied to a cross, we could look above their head and see the crime they were accused of that got them put on the cross.

The Gospel accounts make it clear that this happened with Jesus. His supposed “crime” was nailed to the cross.

John 19:19–20 (CSB): “Pilate also had a sign made and put on the cross. It said: ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.’ Many of the Jews read this sign, because the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and it was written in Aramaic, Latin, and Greek.”

Well, let’s get back to you and me. When we sin, we should acknowledge that sin to the Lord so that He can wipe it clean and bring us back into fellowship with Him.

But how exactly is that sin dealt with? It is an offense that requires punishment. How can God forgive us of that sin?

Colossians 2:14 (CSB): “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.”

Every single sin we commit and receive forgiveness for got nailed to the cross. It’s a crime that is erased from our account (so we don’t get punished for it) but it was put on Jesus’ account (so He suffered its consequences on the cross).

Think of this, friend, when you are tempted to sin. Sure, you can ask forgiveness. But that sin was nailed to the cross and Jesus had to pay the penalty for it.

Feel he weight of this truth the next time you are tempted. Resist that temptation knowing what it cost God’s Son.

Forgiveness is free. But don’t make it cheap by presuming upon it.

* * * * * * * * * *

Lord Jesus, thank You for so freely forgiving me when I acknowledge my sin and turn from it. But help me to feel the weight of what it did to You there on that cross. I pray that my heightened awareness to what my sins did to You will encourage me to resist and kill sin in my mind and heart even more passionately. But I cannot do this alone. I desperately need Your Holy Spirit to empower me if I am to be victorious in this fight. Thank You in advance for coming to my aid. Amen.

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Photo by Hugo Fergusson