The Cross and repentance
The Crucifixion was God’s eternal opinion of the seriousness of sin. The sinless Son of God was made sin for us to satisfy God’s Holiness (2 Corinthians 5:21). Jesus bore the weight of everything we were due – the shame, the wrath, the judgment, the tears, the anguish, the agony, the pain, the punishment, and death for sin (Romans 5:6-8). To wink at the least sin, then, is to insult the price that Jesus paid. Forgiveness is a gift made possible when the Holy Spirit convicts and confronts you and me with the truth that we are sinners and Jesus paid for it all. Repentance comes after conviction and confession, and should bring humble, joyful gratitude, as we begin to understand that Jesus died for us.
God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble (Proverbs 3:34; James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5). If I am working in my own strengths with my own ambitions, then God must set Himself against me until I repent. Why? Because He hates the pride in our hearts. Why does He hate it? Because it is idolatry which will destroy us (Deuteronomy 28).
Hidden sin causes separation between us and God. Wherever we tolerate sin in our lives is the place where we are vulnerable to the enemy. It is the foothold that the enemy has gained in our lives (Ephesians 4:27). Jesus gave the basis for his victory when he said, “The prince of this world is coming. He has no hold on me, nothing in me” (John 14:30).
Any ground in our lives that co-exists with sin is the battleground where we will have loss.
Any ground in our lives that is cleansed of sin through repentance is the battleground where we will have great victory.
Let us then run to God, knowing that if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).