Forgetting Those Things Which Are Behind
Hello, Brothers and Sisters! Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
How difficult is it for you to forget your mistakes, your sins? Do you rehearse your past over and over again, wishing that you could have a do-over? Are you constantly hounded by things that you did, things that you experienced, seeing it all as though it’s a horror story of your life, hearing the words and suffering repeatedly?
With all the love of Almighty God at hand, I beg you, I beg you, I beg you to let it go. I beg you to go to God – run to Him – and ask Him to forgive you for everything, and receive, receive His cleansing power so that your past will no longer have control over your present or future.
Don’t let the hurts of the past lie dormant in you to erupt later like Mt. Saint Helens volcano in Washington state. That volcano had not erupted for 130 years before it did so in 1980. An earthquake caused the eruption of lava and massive rock, which killed people and wildlife, and changed the face of the earth around it until this day. See the similarities between this and the way anguish over your past works in you if you don’t rid yourself of it.
God’s word is the absolute truth, and is no lie, and He says in 1 John 1:9 that “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
The moment you ask God to forgive you, you are forgiven. Psalm 103:11-12 says “For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” Isaiah 43:25 says: “I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.”
In the instance you ask for forgiveness, your sins are removed from you as far as east is from west. That’s approximately 3,000 miles, if we’re speaking literally.
Does this mean there is no penalty, no consequence for sinning? No. There are definite penalties and consequences for every sin, we know that.
Brothers and Sisters, God is not holding our sins against us. Jesus came to restore us to a right relationship with God. Jesus’ shed blood, death on the cross, going into hell and then being raised back to His former place in Heaven with God at God’s right hand signaled, solidified, signed, sealed and made certain without any prospect of change, our REDEMPTION: the purchase of God's favor by the death and sufferings of Christ; the ransom or deliverance of sinners from the bondage of sin and the penalties of God''s violated law by the atonement of Christ.
All of those tormenting thoughts that we have about our past are a product of the devil. The Bible says that satan is the accuser of the brethren” - Revelation 12:10 – “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.”
See that?! Day and Night, the devil is accusing us before our God. DON’T YOU JOIN HIM IN THAT PRACTICE. Stop, please stop accusing yourself, holding yourself hostage because of anything you did in your past. The Holy Spirit said to me “God’s cleansing power closes yesterday’s doors.” God has already closed those doors.
The Apostle Paul said: “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14). The Apostle Paul was not only an accuser of the believers of Jesus, but He assisted in catching them and was present at the time of their murder. Jesus caused Paul to become blind and asked him why he was persecuting Him. (Read Acts 7:58, 9:1-8) It’s personal to God when His children are persecuted. It’s personal to God when the devil persecutes, lies to, on and about us. God gives us the ability to be forgiven of our sins so that the devil has nothing to hold onto. When we sin, we should run directly to God and ask His forgiveness, as I showed you in 1 John 1:9. That takes away the devil’s ability to hold that sin against you.
Does that mean that the devil won’t continue to remind you of your past mistakes and sins? NO! He will continue to do so, but we have the right to tell him to take his lies and go, in Jesus Name: “Get thee behind me, satan. I rebuke you, and I cast down these vain imaginations and bring my thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ.”
Let’s go back to Philippians 3:13-14: “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” None of us has reached perfection – maturity in Christ – and none of us will until we get to Heaven. We have not performed everything God has given unto us, but if we are alive today, we have the opportunity to keep understanding righteousness, to grow in wisdom and faith, to walk in love, to pray, to attend church regularly, tithe and give offerings, be a blessing. We can do like Paul and reach forth unto the things which are before us.
In Philippians 1:6 Paul said “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” God, by the Holy Spirit in us, is constantly working in us, reminding Him of His word: “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you” (John 14:26).
Forgetting those things which are behind also means to forgive yourself. Let up on yourself. Don’t keep beating yourself up – you’re doing what God won’t do to you after you asked Him to forgive you. Forgive others who have wronged you. This is God’s will for our lives.
The Message Bible paraphrases Philippians 3:13-14 this way. I leave you to meditate upon, ponder and receive these words as life in your heart: “I'm not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don't get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I'm off and running, and I'm not turning back.”
Romans 4:17-25 NLT: That is what the Scriptures mean when God told him, “I have made you the father of many nations.” This happened because Abraham believed in the God who brings the dead back to life and who creates new things out of nothing.
Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations. For God had said to him, “That’s how many descendants you will have!” And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb.
Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises. And because of Abraham’s faith, God counted him as righteous. And when God counted him as righteous, it wasn’t just for Abraham’s benefit. It was recorded for our benefit, too, assuring us that God will also count us as righteous if we believe in him, the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God.