Lutheran Home Association Blog

Fully and completely forgiven!

Posted on Mon, Jul 08, 2019

But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:11b)

sunset-4060429_1920Have you ever noticed that when people really want to make a point, they tend to use multiple adjectives or might even pile on superlatives to make their point?

That is exactly what Paul does in our verse for this week to make sure that every single, last person, no matter who they  are or what they have done, knows that God extends to them his forgiveness.

Paul could have simply said “You are forgiven because Jesus lived a perfect life in your place and died to pay for all your sins.” But he uses three different verbs to give us the confidence that no matter the sin, God offers us forgiveness. 

First of all Paul tells us that we are “washed." Paul uses this verb to point us back to our baptism and remind us that because of our baptism God washes away every sin, no matter how seeming horrible, large or small.

Paul then tells us that we are “sanctified." This word means “made holy." Every one of us knows and feels our lack of holiness because of our sin.  Paul assures us that because of what Jesus did, God doesn’t see our sin, but rather sees us as holy and sinless.

Paul then uses the word we focused on in our devotion several weeks ago “justified” or “declared not guilty." Again, each of us knows that we deserve the guilty verdict. But because of what Jesus did for us, God declares us not guilty.

You might be thinking to yourself “This is fine for good Christians, but how about me and the rest of the people in the world?”. 

To really understand the impact of Paul’s words, we need to go back and read verses 6-10 before our verse for this week and look at the list of people whom Paul points out that these words are also intended for. He lists people and the sins which they commit and we might even blush at reading the list. 

Paul’s point is that it doesn’t matter who you are or what the sin is that you committed, Jesus paid for it and offers forgiveness for it.  We simply have to cling to him by faith and believe his promise of forgiveness.

There have likely been times when you’ve done something and either your mind or Satan tried to tell you “There is no way that God can forgive you for what you’ve done.” The next time either one of those enemies or some other naysayer tries to tell you something like that, you can look them in the eye and tell them “I am fully and completely forgiven in Jesus!”

Know that confidence!  Live with the peace that confidence gives!

Posted by Joel Gaertner

Rev. Joel Gaertner is The Lutheran Home Association Vice President of Ministry and National Director of Jesus Cares Ministries (JCM). He provides spiritual guidance to our entire organization and develops and guides JCM programs in congregations. Pastor Gaertner and his wife, LuAnn, live in Cudahy, Wis., and have two adult children. Outside work, he enjoys golf, walking and watching just about any sporting event, especially the Green Bay Packers.

Tags: Christian Life