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When We Are Forgiven Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
November 25, 2020 1:00 am

When We Are Forgiven Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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November 25, 2020 1:00 am

Deep down, everyone knows they fall short of moral perfection. Sin has both immediate and long-term consequences, and only being fully forgiven removes the sense of condemnation that wrongdoers feel.

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Looking down everyone knows they fall short of perfection is both immediate and long-term consequences, and only being fully forgiven sense of condemnation.

Wrongdoers feel from the Moody Church in Chicago this with Dr. Irwin's clear teaching process and make it across the finish line today are taking us to Psalm 32 where God powerfully shows himself to us when we are forgiven. Dave, you know this is a song that I've quoted many times as I assured my own heart that I was forgiven. Blessed is he whose transgressions are forgiven, and whose sin is covered.

We want to thank the many of you who support the ministry of running to win because of your support running to win is now heard in more than 20 different countries including the Middle East, by the way I have in my hand a letter from someone who says imagine my story while riding the back rural roads of Alabama. I listen to your series 1 minute after you die I prayed and asked for forgiveness in my life hasn't been the same. My wife and I have been blessed by your God inspired messages now I find a letter like that very humbling because I know that it's not about me it's about God and it's about people like you who support this ministry, would you consider becoming an endurance partner endurance partners are people who stand with us regularly with their prayers and their gifts.

If you want to know more. Here's what you do go to RTW that's RTW Click on the endurance partner button or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337.

Now let's open our Bibles to Psalm 32 and rejoice in God's forgiveness.

The voice of conscience has brought many people to an early grave. Whether your product in a strict home or whether your brought up in rather we all have a conscience something like those metal detectors at O'Hare Field times they are set more sensitively than other, whether it is set sensitively or perhaps more lenient way metal detector still works and so does your conscience and there's nothing that you can do about the stain of sin, but is upon your conscience. Time doesn't take it away if you men ever spilled some catchup on your time and you say well yeah I did, but that was a long time ago and it's been in the closet now for three years.

The catchup is still there. Time will never obliterate your sin. Time will deaden your conscience, but it will never flinch, and so what we need is God to do that for us the story of David is well known because he was of course a very famous king. But David also committed adultery with Bathsheba and after that relationship and she became pregnant. He tried to cover his sin by bringing your Rafael who was Bathsheba's husband on the battlefield, hoping that he would go home make love to his wife and therefore cover the identity of the child. In fact even got your riot drunk in the scheme didn't work.

So David went to plan B plan B was to have your riot killed and so that's exactly what happened. You all know the story and David thought for a while that his sin was covered. He had done what he needed to do to get out of this house and to salvage his reputation.

Finally, when Nathan the prophet came to him. David was ready to repent.

By the way, how well did his cover-up work well even after he married Bathsheba. Certainly she knew the truth. David knew the truth. The people knew the truth when the baby was born. Nathan knew the truth, and above all, God knew the truth, the cover-up didn't work very well and it never does. Psalm 51 is David's prayer of confession before God as he spells out his heart and Psalm 32 is the Psalm that David also prayed most probably in this connection, as he thanked God for his forgiveness and made a wonderful contrast between the burden of guilt and the blessing of forgiveness. So, would you turn with me today to Psalm 32 Psalm 32 were going to study David's experience in three stages three stages. The first stages were going to consider the burden of unforgiven sin. The burden under which David lived when he tried to cover his sin refused to acknowledge it and never even confessed it before God.

What was that like some scholars think that David was in this state of cover-up for nearly a year until he came clean with God. You'll notice that the Psalm begins by saying, Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.

Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit and now comes the description of life with unforgiven sin. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long for day and night your hand was heavy upon me. My strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.

David said as long as I was not honest as long as I was part of the cover-up. It affected my body because the text says his bones wasted away and there was in word groaning. Many doctors believe that they could dismiss their patients if they could simply look them in the eye and say with authority your forgiven 80% of our psychic energy is usually spent trying to cope with self-condemnation and that dolls sense of guilt that many of us have experienced as a matter of fact, guilt tends to break down the immune system so you're more susceptible to disease or Morris susceptible to physical challenges because because of guilt.

David said it affected my body.

He also says in Psalm 51. It affected my mind that day and night to my sin. Every time someone made an appointment to see me in the palace. I thought in the back of my mind I wonder if he no.

In contemporary terms. Every time the phone rings. I wonder if it's someone who's going to blow my cover and somebody who knows the truth. It affected my body.

It affected my mind. David says it also affects behavior unresolved guilt affects behavior. Chaplain said to a young man in the hospital who was there because of heroin.

Why do you take heroin young man said will chaplain you ought to know the answer to that question is as I feel so bad because of some things that I've done and I don't have enough nerve to blow my brains out so I simply do it the slow way with drug if you don't overcome guilt you're going to have a tendency to addictions.

You'll have a tendency to repeated compulsive destructive behavior because within your trying to somehow resolve the tension of who you know you should be and who you know are so David is in this state and when you think of, held by the way hell is is the raw emotion of guilt in the presence of a holy and just God without alcoholism, without the possibility of pleasure, without any possibility of deadening the pain.

Have you been there when my wife and I were in England this past summer we went to Bunyan's grave your member John Bunyan's tomb is just across the street from the Wesley chapel. In fact, you can see it from Wesley's window and Bunyan was the man who wrote the Pilgrim's progress and talked about Pilgrim walking with this heavy weight on his back and on his tombstone. There is a carving of a man walking with the weight on his back that was too heavy for him to carry on. David says that's the way it was when I was in the mode of cover-up minimizing my sin and refusing to ask God's intervention and forgiveness that stage one stage to. I've entitled at the agony of confession confession is not easy. He says in verses four and five will let's pick it up in verse five, I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity, and I said I will confess my transgressions to the Lord and you for gave me the iniquity of my sin. David says I acknowledged my sin part of verse five I stopped lying I stopped living a lie. I also stopped hiding.

You'll notice I did not cover my iniquity. I I took the tarp and I opened it I I took the covers off and I exposed my soul with its sin to God. And David says here that now he has come clean.

It took Nathan the prophet, by the way, because and and that's a very interesting insight into human nature. When Nathan told him the story about the man who had a stolen sheep. David became angry, he was more angry over a stolen sheep that he was over a stolen wife that he had taken from another man. It's another indication of the blindness the blindness of sin.

The Bible says who so covered with his sin shall not prosper, but whoso confess it and forsake it it shall find mercy.

It is impossible to even imagine the consequences of unconfessed hidden sin. Now what why is it that confession is so difficult is because there are alternatives to confession years ago I heard the title of a book I've never seen it. Don't know who the author is. Don't know who published it, but I have a pretty good idea of what its contents must be because it's entitled how to dodge repentance, how to dodge repentance.

What we do through rationalization.

Everybody does it. We tell ourselves we minimize our sin, we magnify the sins of others and we say will I'm not as bad as so-and-so or what we do is we think that we are going to pay for our sins.

Self-inflicted problems self-inflicted and addictions and and we continue because we say this is the payment because it's not fair that God should simply speak a clean and I must pay for my sin. That becomes an endless nightmare a cycle that we don't ever get out so they're all these alternatives but the one thing that is most difficult and most difficult is to simply be honest with God and say, okay, got all the closets of my life are now open to you every everything is exposed.

Nothing is hidden from your site. You know it's there. And now I'm acknowledging it's there to the agony of confession.

Think of the shame. When David finally had to admit what he did.

That was one thing to take another man's life.

It's another thing even to take his wife and all that is connected along with that and the death of the baby God gave to Bathsheba all of that David says okay, the time is, I've acknowledged my iniquity to you. The cover-up is over.

So the first stage of his experiences, the burden of guilt and unforgiven sin. The second is the agony of passion and the third is the blessing of forgiveness. It's that burden that John Bunyan had on the on his back rolled away and finally being able to get up and walk in freedom. How did John Wesley put it, excuse me Charles Wesley my chains fell off. My heart was free. I rose when four and follow the notice how David describes it, one hour back to verses one and two archways is blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven. Who sin is covered.

God took the ugly mess in the sense of snowfall to cover the ugly trails all of the ruts in the road of my life. Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven is sin is covered.

God no longer imputes that he no longer holds us guilty as a result of it. Oh yes, consequences may continue his David experience but that sense of guilt is gone, there is now freedom. You'll notice in verse one. He says God you for gave me. Isn't that blessed notice verse seven.

You are my hiding place.

Now that my sin is forgiven, were back in fellowship you for gave me you high me.

Indeed, you preserve me from trouble and you surround me with shouts of deliverance.

You forgive me you hide me. Verse eight you guide me this now. Maybe God speaking. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go. I will counsel you with my eye upon you.

The whole idea is this, that when I was at a fellowship. I had no sense of God's guidance and never prayed for God's will. You say I want God's will.

God show me your will. And even when you are praying you are walking in disobedience out of fellowship with God with sin in your life that you're not willing to expose to the all seeing eye of God.

Just try that. Well don't drive but if you do you'll find there's no sense of God's guide because you know what God is saying is got a same look. You know you're asking for guidance over here but look at what's over here if you deal with this, then we can talk guide God you forgive me you hide me, you guide me. You inspire me notice it says in verse 11. Be glad in the Lord and rejoice so righteous and shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart. Finally, you qualify to sing in the choir because now it is not merely words that you are singing, but from the heart you're giving praise to God because of the freedom and because of the conscience that has been planned and that's done by God. So he says, Lord, Lord, thank you for freeing me check. David says you know during that time when I was part of the cover-up. I was like a horse or mule verse nine do not be like a horse or a mule without understanding which must be curved with bit and bridle, or it will not stay near you.

I know something about horses. Nothing about mules but I can imagine how stubborn they are like that old story about a man who hit a meal with a 2 x 4 in the prison. So why don't you just speak to them is that I've to get his attention. First, David says that's why I was stubborn, unwilling to be led by God, like a horse that is unbroken or a mule that is determined to go nowhere and David is saying now. Don't be like I was. Don't hide your sin don't rationalize it. Don't tell yourself that you're not as bad as somebody else because of it and don't ever think that somehow it'll go away. If you simply ignore it because as I mentioned time will deaden the conscience, but time never cleanses the conscience. The staying is still there so I have to ask you, what does it take in your life and mine for us to really genuinely confess our sins before God of all honesty and allow God to go into all the crevices of our life.

I'd like to bring you some lessons that we learn from this that I hope will be transforming. I hope the Holy Spirit of God will use these lessons for as long as you live in for some of you I could be an awful long time when my friend, this is Pastor Luther and most assuredly, I hope that you listen to running to win next time as this message continues for now I want to thank the many of you who support this ministry. We are greatly blessed because of you.

Thanks so much for those of you who have become partners of this ministry in a regular way, did you know that as a result of your faithfulness running to win is now heard in the Middle East. Thousands upon thousands of Muslims are listening in countries such as Iraq, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Egypt and elsewhere. Thank you in advance if you'd like to become an endurance partner that is somebody who stands with us regularly with their prayers and their gifts. Here's what you do to find more information go to RTW that's RTW Click on the endurance partner button or if you prefer you can call us at 1-888-218-9337 at a time when the gospel is desperately needed and the conviction of sin is so necessary. We thank you for supporting this ministry. RTW Click on the endurance partner button or if you prefer, call us at 1-888-218-9337 it's time again for another chance for you to ask your looks, or a question you may have about the Bible or the Christian life. Pastor Luther when loved ones pass away angels help us Carol has written to us from Powell Tennessee and this is her story. I have a question concerning angels are their guardian angels watch over us and help us out. Sometimes are they someone that we once knew here on earth. My mother went to heaven in 1999 and six months later, so did my brother two years after that my dad went to be with the Lord, not to mention the other friends and family that have gone on in the years since I dream about my parents and my brother a lot there always happy dreams but I can't remember what they're saying to me and on days when I feel I need a little more guidance and I'm impatient because Jesus hasn't dropped an answer in my lap. Does he send angels who were going to help. Will Carol I find your question very interesting and it has several different facets. Let me begin by answering the most easy part does God send angels to help us in the answer is yes. Hebrews chapter 1 verse 14 says that they are ministering angels sent forth to minister to those who shall be heirs of salvation. I take it that you are in error of salvation.

You receive Jesus Christ as your Savior, so the Angels are there to minister to you. I've always believed that we do not see angels. Of course, and maybe in heaven will learn about all the different ways that the Angels protected us when we were unaware of it. So the answer to that question is yes. Now, in response to your other question, are these people who have gone on people whom you have known your talking about the death of your mother you're talking about the death of your brother and so forth. Is there any connection between them and the Angels and the answer is no. When an angel helps you is not your mother is not your brother. Angels are a distinct creation by God and that they were created without uncles and sisters and brothers and parents they have that kind of individual existence, and it is not true as some people believe that when our loved ones die they go to heaven and they become Angels know they continue to be people. Your mother is still a person.

Your brother and the other relatives that you referred to. Now you say that you have dreams about your family, and there always very positive dreams. I'm glad about that.

I think that what that signifies is you probably had a very good relationship with them. My father died nearly 2 years ago and sometimes I dream about him and my dreams are very positive, but I don't expect my father to somehow connect with me because he's become an angel. So thanks so much for your question, I will tell you this Carol that your mother in heaven remembers you. I believe that she loves you. The same can be said about your brother who has passed on, and the good news is that someday we shall all be together.

Thank you Carolyn. Thank you Dr. lutes are if you'd like to hear your question answered.

You can just go to our and click on ask Pastor Luther or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 running to win is all about helping you understand God's roadmap. Your race of life on our next Flemings when will hear more from Psalm 32 on the blessing of being fully forgiven by God sees everything we do. Thanks for listening for Dr. Irwin lutes are this is Dave running to win is sponsored by the Moody church

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