By Grant Hawley
One of the great things about God is that He is omniscient. That means He knows (and always has known) everything. He knows what is, what was, what will be and everything that could ever be. Whatever question we could dream up, He already knows the answer to it, and so much more.
That means that from all eternity, God has known every mistake you would ever make, every last time you have missed or will miss His mark. Yet, not only does He still love you, but He was and is still so very in love with you that He sacrificed His Son just to be with you (Rom 5:8).
It is a precious thing to stand forgiven before God, knowing that you are accepted, but sometimes we don't feel as though we are.
I'm coming to know more and more how vital it is to know just how forgiven we are. As far as East is from the West, God has removed our transgressions from us (Psalm 103:12), and we have the right to a clear conscience. A life free from guilt is God's design for us, because guilt is nothing but a trap set by the devil to keep us separated from God (in fellowship, not in reality) and wallowing in sadness. Satan knows that only in intimate union with Christ can we live holy lives (John 15:5), and guilt is one of his diabolical tools to interrupt that intimacy.
But God is bigger than that. 1 John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness." The word for confess in the Greek means to say the same. The idea is that we say the same thing God does about our sins. But what does He say? He says that yes, indeed we have sinned, and yes indeed our sin is a hindrance to us living the joyful life God desires for us. But let's not forget that God also says we are forgiven, that our sins are separated from us as far as East is from the West, that our hearts are sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water (Heb 10:22).
Always know that God has always known, yet He gave His Son for you. You are loved. You are justified in His sight. You have been freed in so many ways, and this is one of them. Cast off the burden of shame and fix your eyes on Jesus.