We often wonder, “does God forgive?” God does offer his forgiveness and love to all. Every person is a sinner, as we have been born into a fractured and sinful world. Because of this every person is in need of God’s forgiveness. God does not want us to live in guilt or in separation from him. This is why he offers his forgiveness. It is all about his love for us and not about what we deserve or earn.
Our sins are serious and have consequences. Jesus came to die for all sin and offer forgiveness because he loves us and knows we can’t earn our own forgiveness or save ourselves. Despite that truth, we let our minds trick us into thinking we must make things right and can’t approach God before doing so.
The most common emotions most of us have after sinning are guilt and shame. We either don’t understand or believe that Jesus still loves us. We find it hard to accept that he is willing to forgive and help us change. We worry that he will be silent, disapproving, judgmental or unloving. Satan wants to deceive and have us feel like God is disappointed instead of confidently trusting his grace.
We do not need to fix ourselves, serve self-imposed penance or try to make things right before going to God for forgiveness. God forgives out of love and mercy not merit. The Bible tells us that it is not enough to just believe God exists. We must acknowledge our sins and believe and trust that Jesus died for our sins. We must have faith that His death is the full payment for our sin debt. We must depend on His resurrection as the guarantee that we will be raised to eternal life after death. This involves recognizing both our need for forgiveness and our need for his help in becoming who he created each of us to be. Trust Jesus and let him forgive you.
How God forgives you is a big question and we would love to discuss it more with you.