I am sitting in a hotel in Knoxville and desire a soft drink. At the end of the hall is a machine. In my pocket is a $20 bill, and no other change. The machine will not take a $20 bill. I feel at times like that $20 bill. Let me explain…
Could I encourage you to read Psalm 51? We live in a world and society that refuses to be “broken” regarding anything. Any pain or discomfort is treated with pills these days. All pain seems to be treated as problematic. I recently read an article in a magazine that discussed a Pastor who sinned a great sin and was caught. The very next Sunday he stood and preached 90 minutes and said the following, “Anytime someone makes you feel guilty about your sin, they are under the old system – pre-Christ. That’s not what Christianity is all about. Under the new system and movement – all is well. I am ok, you’re ok, come to Christ and there is no need for brokenness.”
This new movement is designed to try to dull the conviction that is absolutely necessary for change. David wrote Psalm 51 over two years after he committed adultery with Bathsheba; two years after he murdered Uriah. Verse 3 he tells us, “My sin is ever before me”. One misunderstood perception about Reformers Unanimous is that we sometimes lead our students in trying to get them to forget their sins. That is not true. God forgets our sins! He promises to remove them as far the east is from the west. God can do that – He is God; us, not so much. If we forget like that, it is called amnesia, and that is not a good thing.
Please do not misunderstand me, I am not asking people to dwell on their sin. I believe that a right response to sin will cause a greater view of Christ in our lives. In Isaiah 6, Uzziah saw the Lord, and said in Isaiah 6:5 “Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.” I believe God made us to be able to remember our sins for the following reasons:
1. If we could forget our sins, we could never testify of the goodness of God.
We need to remain broken over sin, because it reminds us of the goodness of God in our lives. A sinner saved by grace should not become cliché; it should be a daily reminder and reality.
2. If we could forget our sins, we will probably do it again! Instead, we need to learn from them.
Remembering our sin will urge and correct us to not make the same foolish choices, but rather choose Him. He loves us and desires to help us.
3. If we could forget our sins, we could not rejoice in our victories.
There would be no “First Talk” testimonies at RU on Friday nights. I believe ingratitude is a sign of self-righteousness. Remembering our sin, not relishing in it, will point others to the Saviour!
4. If we could forget our sins, we would not love Him as much.
Luke 7:47, “Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.”
Remembering our sins is part of the broken process. Remember He said, “A broken and contrite heart, He will not resist”. Remember the $20 bill? The $20 bill cannot help me until it is broken. I want to tell you that in my ministry of 30 years, I can tell you I have not helped many people during those times I walked around as a $20 bill thinking I was something. At times I felt like I was $50 or even a $100. It is only those times that I am broken that I can be a help as a servant of the Lord. In His eyes, I am valuable, but understanding that only comes because of a proper understanding of brokenness. I am nothing, He is everything! Be careful not to hinder the work of the Lord as He desires brokenness. Teach others by example to be broken before the Lord today.