1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” To “purify” (katharizo) is to cleanse the spiritual heart from the filth, pollution and contamination of sin. As the child of God is sanctified through the washing of the Word of God and the cleansing work of the Holy Spirit, he is more and more becoming like Jesus Christ, thus he is being freed from the admixture of a life controlled by the flesh and the world, to enjoying a Holy Spirit led life.
Chemistry has performed many wonderful feats of transformation. What is more black and dirty and unpromising than coal tar? Yet it has been changed into the most beautiful useful colors and lotions.
What can be more filthy and unpromising than a God-hating, sin loving, blaspheming sinner, steeped in a cesspool of iniquity, and possessed by the spirit of the devil? Yet the purifying grace promised in 1 John 1:9 has changed many such a man and enabled them to become fellow workers of the Lord Jesus.
One such man was John Bunyan – He was born to hard working parents who tried to set John on the right course in life, yet rebellion moved him into a life of darkness, becoming the ring leader of many youth who loved all manners of vice and ungodliness.
God was faithful to warn John, he writes, “The Lord even in my childhood, did scare and affright me with fearful dreams and did terrify me with dreadful visions.” Even in his adult life John was able to recognize God judgments and mercy in his life, yet still retained his hard heart. John writes, “I sinned still and grew more and more rebellious against God and careless of my own salvation. It was my delight to be taken by the devil at his will: being filled all unrighteousness.” He loved sinning for the devil, indulging the flesh with all the world had to offer.
However, after suffering the consequences of sin, John finally surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. The Lord did a powerful cleansing in John’s spiritual heart, enabling him to become a great soldier of Christ, standing against false teachings in the church and a hard worker in the spread of the Gospel. His stand ended him up in prison for 12 years, were he enjoyed the Holy Spirit’s enablement to write the famous Christian allegory, “Pilgrims Progress.”
The blood of Christ is a life changing, purifying cleanser of the Spiritual heart enabling the worst God hating sinner to repent and become a solder of Christ who is equipped to serve the Lord, even in the most difficult circumstances in life. Any repentant sinner could be used of God to do a work that changes lives long after they have gone home to be with the Lord.
1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Isaiah 43:25 says, “I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.”
The Lord treats repentant sin placed under the blood of Christ as if He has completely forgotten the act. (Jamieson, Fausset and Brown) Christians have the assurance that God blots out the sin. This is a metaphor taken from the custom of keeping accounts, where, when a dept is paid, it is blotted out. It is like a drop of ink or in this case, a drop of blood from Christ gets on the recorded account and cannot be read. Notice, I said it is like.
It is important to note that it is not because of what anyone has done. It is because God longs to show His forgiveness as Christ showed His love for us in His obedience unto death. Christians do not rest upon a work of any kind, they may rest upon the ever-loving, never-ending grace of God found in faith in Christ and Christ alone. Lay every sin at the foot of the Cross and trust alone in God’s Word, which reveals Christ, the person of our sure hope.
God forgave King David of the many sins he committed, even though he suffered the consequences of those sins the rest of his life, the Lord used him greatly. The Lord took murderous Saul of the New Testament, and changed him into a great apostle to the gentiles (Romans 11:13; Galatians 2:8; 1 Timothy 2:7) and used him to write most of the New Testament. The Lord took Peter, the one who publicly denied Christ (John 18:12-27) and made him into a great spiritual leader (1 and 2 Peter), it was his type of faith in Christ of which the Lord said, “I will build My church” (Matthew 16:18).
The Lord is taking men and women from all over the world, Jews and Gentiles and calling them to Christ and enabling them to do a great work with Him. He forgave their sins and is using them to preach and teach the Word of God. Churches are being started and sustained. People are being taught the teachings of Christ and the whole counsel of God’s Word. God treated people in the Bible as though he has forgotten their sins and many today can testify of the Lord’s treating them as though He has forgotten their sins.
The Lord’s prophet wrote about Jesus’ suffering in Isaiah 52:14, “Just as there were many who were appalled at Him – His appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any man and His form marred beyond human likeness…” Isaiah 53:6 says, “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid upon Him [that is Christ] the iniquity of us all.”
“Iniquity” (awon) here is a masculine noun meaning evil, guilt, punishment. This word indicates sin that is done deliberately and presents the idea of twisting truth and perverting what is pure and right. The consequences of sin is punishment. This word for sin can also indicate the guilt that results from the act of sin. Jesus took upon Himself the consequences of all sin which is destroying mankind.
The atonement blood of Christ is an amazing ongoing work still touching spiritual hearts today. One Bible teacher wrote, “His continued taking of our trespasses upon Himself is merely the constant presence and presentation of His atonement, which has been offered once for all. …because of His one self-sacrifice, as an eternal Priest, who now lives to distribute the blessings which He has acquired.” Isaiah 53:12 says, “…Fore He bore the sin of many and made intercession for the transgressors.” This passage of Scripture enables the child of God to see Jesus as bearing our sins and interceding at the Throne of Grace for us daily. (Hebrews 4:16; 1 John 2:1-2)
Considering the Cross of Calvary and our Savior, Jesus Christ who gave Himself upon it, enables us to rest upon the fact that Christ has taken upon Himself every harsh word we have spoken, every wrong deed we have done and offers healing to all we may have injured in our sins. Focusing on what Christ took upon Himself, the sins of the world, enables us to enjoy complete healing for every harsh word spoken to us, find rest in His intercession for every wrong deed done unto us and brings true healing to our spiritual hearts every time it becomes injured.
Gratitude is surrendering our sins over to Christ! Let Him bear your sins!