I find it helpful and interesting to look deeper into the original languages of scripture to help me understand concepts. In Yahweh’s self-description (Exodus 34:6-7), forgiveness is listed as one of God’s character qualities. The original Hebrew word used is one that literally means to pick up or lift an object and move it away. It also means to remove guilt and the penalty of wrong doing.
Sin is a heavy load. In Psalm 32, David described his physical condition when his sin was unconfessed. He says it was like a hand that laid heavy on him. His body wasted away, his strength evaporated like water in the summer heat. But he begins the psalm like this:
“Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!”Psalm 32:1-2
Notice the relief and joy that one feels when there is forgiveness! In another psalm of David (Psalm 103), he recites God’s character and then says this:
He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve…. He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.Psalm 103:10, 12
These are the words of David, a man who knew God’s forgiveness. He committted adultery and murder then lied to cover up his misdeeds. But when he understood the gravity of his actions, he repented. And God faithfully forgave him. David confidently says, “He does not deal with me harshly as I deserve!”
Do you have a heavy load that makes life difficult? Are you living life in complete honesty? Do you need a dose of forgiveness and unfailing love? It’s here for you! Just ask.