Pursuing Answers to Questions of Faith & Life

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My Favorite Thing About GMail

Gmail has a great feature in their spam filter called “delete forever”. It creates a warm and fuzzy feeling knowing that a particular message from the Dubai Lottery, Viagra-on-line, or Ms. Cleo Wannabe will be gone and will never grace my computer or e-mail system again.

I got to wondering why they don’t have that feature in the regular mail section. There’s just “delete”. That’s because even though you delete it, they assume you might really want to get it back at some point. A deleted message gets put into a Trash file and is kept automatically for 30 days just in case you made a mistake and want to get it back.

Which kind of person are you? Are you a “delete” person or a “delete forever” person?

I as a human being, and I’m guessing this goes for you too, want to be treated by “delete forever” people. I want all of my mistakes, all of my offenses, all my stupidity to be put into the “delete forever” category so that it will never be remembered or brought up again. I hope and want people to forgive me completely.

While I want to be treated this way, I know that I do not act this way myself. In some cases, what comes naturally for me is to be a regular “delete” person. I delete an offense, I “forgive” but really, I just put it into the Trash file that gets held onto for a period of time. I confess, for some things, it’s longer than 30 days. It is possible to keep things on file in the Forgiven Trash section for over 30 years. Years of offenses are there to be mulled over or brought out as ammunition or defensive grenades.

Am I alone in this? Everyone wants to “forgive and forget” but we don’t. We want to be treated this way, but since we can’t do it, we know it’s not a real possibility.

That’s one of the amazing things about God. God doesn’t have 2 kinds of delete buttons. He has one kind and amazingly enough—it is “Delete Forever”

Jeremiah 31:34—“"For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."

Psalm 103:12—“as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”

Micah 7:19—“You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.”

Isaiah 43:25—“It is I who sweep away your transgressions, for My own sake and remember your sins no more.”

When the Blood of Jesus is applied to you and me—God no longer sees our sin, no longer sees our unrighteousness, instead He sees only the righteousness of Christ. We are moved from the category of a lawbreaker and given the status that the sacrifice of Jesus acquired-that His resurrection guaranteed.

As Paul says in Colossians 1:13—“He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
Later in 1:22—“but now He has reconciled you by His physical body through His death, to present you holy, faultless, and blameless before Him”

When our sins are deleted, they are deleted forever—they are removed fully and completely. 1 John 1:9—“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

I am so glad that my sin is not forgiven—only to be stored away and used against me later. Satan likes to play that game—he likes to remember our failures and remind us of them. Satan is the Accuser—but in reality—“no condemnation now exists for those in Christ Jesus”

They have been deleted forever—never to be used against us.

Which kind of person are you?
How do you hope to be treated?
Have your sins been put into the “delete forever” category b/c you have received redemption through Jesus?

What are your thoughts?

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