“The LORD is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion.
The LORD protects the simple-hearted; when I was in great need, he saved me.”
Nowhere in Scripture does it say, or infer, that sin does not matter. On the contrary Scripture makes it very clear that sin does matter, that sin destroys our relationships – primarily with God, but also with others and with ourselves. The Bible is also very clear that sin will result in the physical and spiritual death of the sinner – “the wages of sin is death.”
So although the psalmist can quite rightly say that God is gracious he also, and at the same time, reminds us that God is righteous. God will always be a righteous God; it is a part of His love and his holiness. So the consequences of sin will always have to be faced. However, so great is His love and compassion that in order to allow His grace a free rein He took the consequences and judgement for our sin upon Himself. He did this to save us from the death of sin and to allow us back into a full, eternal and intimate relationship with Him. He took our sin and gave us His Spirit instead, to recover, renew and restore us.
God has not made it a complex process for us. We receive it through a simple-hearted faith and trust in Him, His love and His redemption in Jesus Christ. We do not have to know the full depth and significance of the sin, the judgement and the sacrifice involved – and indeed, because we have such a limited vision and understanding of the majesty, power, authority, glory and holiness of God we can never begin to grasp the full truth, implication and consequence of it all. Our understanding and vision will grow clearer the closer we draw to God but it will still, in this world, be a very pale reflection of the Truth.
It is enough to know that I have sinned and fallen short of the glory of the Lord –that I have a great need of His mercy and forgiveness, and that in Christ this has become a reality. The psalmist’s testimony that ‘when I was in great need He saved me’ is now true not only in certain material and time-bound ways but in the spiritual realm as well and through all eternity. Like a child we are asked to put our hand into the hand of our Father and say to Him, “I want to come with You.”
Remember that God has taken our sins and shortcomings upon Himself. Nothing can now separate us from Him once we have become His children.
Father I do believe, help my unbelief – and let me walk hand in hand with You through all the years ahead. Amen.