"As far as the east is from the west,
so far has He removed our transgressions from us."
Guilt. Shame. They eat away at people's lives like an incurable disease. More people suffer from guilt and shame than any ailment that is known to man. Why? The simple answer is that sin brings shame with it. From the very first act of sin in the Garden of Eden, we see man running to hide because of his guilt. It has been this way ever since. Most have wrongfully concluded that if they can hide it from man then it can be hidden from God. However, we must remember that the eyes of the Lord see throughout the whole earth beholding the evil and the good. There is nothing that escapes His knowledge.
Consider though what happens when Jesus steps on to the scene of our guilt. 2,000 years ago God sent His only Son to be the atoning sacrifice for the sins of man once and for all. On the cross Jesus took the heavy burden of sin and died in our place. He died for all of those sins that bring such shame and guilt. We did not deserve such mercy, but He gave it freely of His own accord. In the same psalm as above we read, "He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities." If God chose to punish each one of us based on our own merit, who could stand before Him? Thankfully those that come and receive the finished work of Jesus on the cross of Calvary as their atonement and accept Him by faith can know forgiveness and ever lasting life.
At the moment of God's forgiveness, our sins are cleansed and removed as far as the east is from the west. The prophet Micah said that He will cast our sins into the depths of the sea. God is not like us. We each have the ability to forgive another individual, but we do not have the ability to forget their transgression against us. God forgives and never again lays that sin to our charge. Most of us carry around the weight of guilt and shame because of our own failings and sinful actions. May I encourage you today to know that if God has forgiven you, let Him also heal you of the shame of those sins. It is important to learn the lessons from our past transgressions, but there is no need to let it weigh us down for the rest of our lives. Thank the Father for His forgiveness, and live the new life that He has prepared for you.
May you know freedom from guilt and shame today!