Jim Wilson is the retired director of Community Christian Ministries in Moscow, Idaho. He will be posting regularly, so check back in soon!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Refusing to Rejoice

We all know people who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ who do not live in the joy of the forgiveness of their sins.

There are several reasons for this.

1. They are not Christians. They are Christians in name only.
2. They are Christians, but have accumulated unconfessed, unforgiven sins in
their life. They are being chastened by God.
3. They are Christians. They have confessed their sins in detail, but refuse to accept God’s forgiveness. They think they do not deserve forgiveness. That is true, but that has nothing to do with forgiveness. Forgiveness is by love and grace.

This refusal is a greater sin than the sins they have been confessing. It needs to be repented of. Here is why.

1. “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” Philippians 4:4

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

These are commands.

2. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

God is faithful. He keeps his word. Refusing to accept this forgiveness is saying that God is not faithful. You may think you are not saying it; you are just not rejoicing in His forgiveness. Who do you think you are? Are you senior to God?

3. ”For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:11, 12

“Heavens above the Earth.” That is a long way!

“East from the West”—That is an infinite distance. "North from South" is a fixed distance.

4. "I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” Isaiah 43:25

He blots sins out for His own sake. He does not remember them.

5. “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.” 2 Corinthians 7:10

The sorrow for sin is worldly sorrow.

If you are refusing to rejoice for any of the above reasons, you are in big trouble with God.

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