What about our “Past”?
One of the things I love about the Passover season is what it says about the Passover: “When I see the BLOOD, I will PASS OVER you and not allow the Destroyer to come into your homes”. Any household in ancient Israel who killed their innocent lamb and sprinkled its blood on the entrance of their house was spared having their firstborn males and livestock die that night. The innocent lamb took the death for the household.
You see, we’ve all earned the death penalty for our sins (Romans 6:33). No point in looking at someone else’s “past” – and thinking your “past” is not as bad as his or hers. If you or I fall one fraction of one point short of the perfection of Holy God, we have earned the death penalty. Sin is the transgression of God’s law (1 John 3:4) and if we stumble even in just one point, we were guilty of all (James 2:10). ALL of us are in that same boat.
So why do people still talk about someone’s “past”? When I hear discussions like that, it tells me those people have not learned even the very basics of Bible Forgiveness 101 yet. When you and I repented of our sins and asked for the blood of the Lamb of God to apply to us -- ALL our past, ALL our sins, ALL our unrighteousness, ALL our spiritual failures – were washed away. There is no past now. It’s been washed clean in the crimson tide of the Lamb’s blood shed for you and for me. ALL of the sin. Not one sin was left. Not one. Not one of mine, not one of yours.
1 John 1:7-9
But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son CLEANSES US FROM ALL SIN.
8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to FORGIVE US OUR SINS and TO CLEANSE US FROM ALL unrighteousness.
Praise Yah, the one living God Most High who loved you and me so much that He sent the Word, the One by whom all things were created, to become flesh and live and die for each of us. ALL my sins, ALL my unrighteousness are GONE in his cleansing blood. And your sins, ALL of them – are gone, if you’ve accepted your Savior.
Now – to me it’s like I’m hearing MY Savior’s words spoken as directly to me as He spoke to the woman caught in the act of adultery—“Neither do I condemn you”. Once we know we stand uncondemned, you know what? It’s much easier to live a life where you no longer want to sin, but to live for Christ. First we experience “neither do I condemn you” – then, we hear “Go and sin no more.”
But most of our churches teach it the other way around. They say in essence, “Go and sin no more and then you won’t be condemned.” But that is NOT the order or sequence our Savior used. He said FIRST that He did not condemn her, then in that liberating joy of being uncondemned, we can go on and “sin no more”. DO you get the difference? It’s a major difference.
But part of the message of Passover is to understand that neither did Yeshua just sweep her horrendous sin of adultery under the rug. No, no, no. HE took that sin and its curse and penalty and took it upon himself. That’s the ONLY way He could say “neither do I condemn you” –because He knew that HE was taking her condemnation on to himself.
The price of grace, the cost of forgiveness, is extremely high. It took the death of God-made-into-man in the form of Yeshua (Jesus) to pay the price of grace. Don’t ever speak of “cheap grace”. There’s nothing cheap about grace when you really understand it.
Wow, Yeshua! Wow! As we grasp more and more of your love, we come to love you more and more each day as well. We can love you because we see more clearly how you first loved us. Wow, our Master!
So please, brothers and sisters, let’s stop talking about someone’s – anyone’s – past. If they are in Christ, they are a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17) and the past is past and gone.
For the rest of this blog, click on “read more” at the bottom right corner. I want mercy extended to me… Click on “read more” to get the full discussion.
WARNING: ANY of us who insist on condemning others – especially others who have accepted Yeshua as their Savior – are in danger of the condemnation ourselves! For with what measure, or standard of mercy/judgment we use, will be the same standard used against us! That means if I gossip about someone else’s forgiven past, and condemn that person, then I am condemning myself.
"For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”
Matthew 7:1-3 CJB
“Don’t judge, so that you won’t be judged. 2 For the way you judge others is how you will be judged — the measure with which you measure out will be used to measure to you.”
I don’t know about you, but I want to be forgiven, so I have stopped talking about others’ past. I have enough of my own that had to be washed away. And I want the measurement used to measure me be a measurement of kindness and mercy – not harsh judgment that I’ve used on others.
One more thing: when I gossip and condemn someone’s forgiven past, his sins are long gone. But now I’ve just committed the present and evil sins of gossip, sowing discord and not forgiving. His sins were forgiven, but my sins of present gossip stand unforgiven – unless I deeply repent of that and quit bringing up peoples’ pasts!
If you want to condemn someone’s past – then remember King David. He murdered an innocent loyal top commander so David could try to hide his adultery with that man’s wife. But David was forgiven, washed clean, and so we still read his writings, benefit from his continued ministry to God’s service as a king and prophet – IN SPITE of the horrible things he did. God continued to use David. He continued to use Paul – who also killed people. And yet Paul was used to write much of the New Testament. You see, when YHVH forgives, HE really forgives and goes on to use us. IN fact, He uses us as a model for how much HE CAN forgive! As Paul called himself, “CHIEF sinner” – and basically says “Hey, if God can forgive me, he can forgive anyone” (1 Timothy 1:15-16). Wow, Father. Wow, Yeshua. Wow! And those forgiven much, love much (Luke 7:47-48).
And yes, Yeshua forgives sins too (Luke 7:48-49; Col. 3:13; Matthew 9:6).
Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you, saying, 'I repent,' you shall forgive him."
And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.
SO what about our past? If we’ve repented of it, there is none that our heavenly Father sees. YHVH says – “I see the blood of MY Passover Lamb, who TAKES AWAY the sin of the world (John 1:29) – and all I see is the cleansing blood. You are forgiven, and receive my love and my blessings with it.”
Remember, the blood of bulls and goats could not TAKE AWAY sin (Hebrews 10:4, 11). They could only temporarily cover them – what “Yom Kippur” means – Day of covering. But the blood of the Son of God TOOK THEM AWAY, paid for them, washed you clean, and you can now come boldly before the throne of grace IN Christ, in Yeshua’s holy and perfect name. You’re IN HIM now, part of HIM – that’s the ONE BODY we all become a part of. ESTEEM him, and HIS BODY too for that matter.
For more on this topic, check out my sermon “When I see the Blood” – April 2014.
But whatever you do, let go of your own past – and other people’s past – and look to the saving grace and cleansing we ALL receive from our master.