Wednesday, March 14, 2012
My husband helped me to set it up so that I could pull away from noisy demands, and do what I need to do, and that is "listen" to my Father.
This morning I was awakened at 3:30. Now, I did go to bed at 9pm, but did not sleep well due to being inundated with red chili, pico de gallo, and cheese from an early Mexica dinner. It was soooo good, though!! But, when I did get up my thoughts went to this room, so I made a cup of hot tea, put on a beautifully soft worship CD, and opened my Bible to Psalms 103.
I knew that in order to have God's Presence, I needed to open my Eye Gates, and take in His Word. Within just a few minutes of focusing upon the truths in verses 1-4, my attention became single minded upon the blessings that He has so graciously given to me.
In earlier studies I have sought the definition of "blessed", "soul", "benefits", iniquities", etc. I try not to take a word at my level of understanding. Words are too rich! Taking time to plumb the depths of their meanings have brought me up to a higher level of understanding of God's Word. I enjoy this type of study, and is one of the reasons I love the Amplified Bible. My husband says I am an "amplified woman". I love that.
Well, back to Psalms 103. I want to just simply focus on the word "iniquity". Verse 3 says in the NIV..."Who forgives (which means a continuous action) ALL your iniquities."
Iniquity (Vines Complete Concordance of Old and New Testament Words) - a condition of not being right, whether with God, according to the standard of His holiness and righteousness, or with man, according to the standard of what man knows to be right by his conscience.
So...when the Holy Spirit inspired David's psalm, and he wrote this down, it was the grace of God assuring ANYONE who would ever read this in the generations to come that He (God) HAD put forth "forgiveness", was IN the process of completely cancelling that condition of "not being right" EVEN before the person reading this knew that this was his/her condition!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
How can this be?? How could God already forgive me when I wasn't even born?? How could He forgive me when I didn't even know what I was going to do before I did it? Or...how could He forgive me before I committed an iniquity on purpose?
God isn't waiting to forgive anyone! He HAS forgiven. He HAS determined through the shed blood of Jesus that that sin which issued forth from the sinner is not greater, nor would it ever be greater than the Grace that He enacted as the Answer to the sin problem. He put Grace in place BEFORE I ever drew a breath in this world. Then He sent His Word to this world so that someday as I brought my heart to Him, seeking His Presence; sometimes overburdened with my "iniquity"; I would see those precious words...."Who FORGIVES all my evil-doing, my departure from what is right, my badness or bad works".
We run from God thinking that our works are so evil that we must clean up before He will accept us. It ain't so!!! Even in the act, whatever it might be, God loves and forgives the one who is living below the standard that He has established as right. I just read this morning of the woman who was caught in adultery. "Holy" men dragged her before Jesus and demanded her punishment, and wanted to stand and watch her humiliation. John 8 vividly records how Jesus did not deny that she had done anything wrong, but He invited those who were so intent on exposing her sin to pick up a stone and be the first to bruise and cut her skin...ONLY...ONLY...ONLY...if THEY had never sinned.
Oh, the mercy of God! How rich, how sweet!! Jesus KNEW the sin of that woman! Jesus also KNEW the sin of those men, for their hardness of heart was just as much of a sin as her adultery. Iniquity is also described as "hardness of heart".
I get hard at times. I become offended by the actions (or lack thereof ) of others. I feel bruised by people's words or their opinions, and if I am not careful to understand my new nature, Who lives in me NOW, then I can become "hard", and want to see them punished for their "evil-doing". Then I read Psalms 103:3. What Jesus did for me, He has done for them. He does not applaud that badness that has been expressed nor does He ignore it. He has provided a remedy, an atonement, a higher standard of love that says...."no weapon formed against you shall prosper".
The Holy Spirit graciously recorded in Romans 8, that "we" are more than conquerors through the Love of Christ. His Love, His Mercy, His Grace IS IN PLACE in the hearts of those who belong to Him. We just have to release outwardly what He has birthed inwardly in us. We have to learn how to not only accept the grace that forgave us, but we have to be willing to extend that same grace to others.
Bad things happen. We live in a fallen world. But...GREATER is HE that IS IN US, than he that is in this world (satan), and who seeks to harm, to destroy, and to condemn.
Go to Psalms 103 today. Let these gracious words heal you, and help you forgive as you have been forgiven. Honor God today by remembering those anointed and powerful Love Words!!! They are for you.