Question:

I have been a member of the church of Christ since I was in my teens. I got baptized before I knew what goes on in this world. I grew up and have done a number of wrongs that I don't know if I will be forgiven because they were done knowingly. I committed fornication and had an abortion. Nothing can justify that but what I was going through made me make that choice. To cut a long story short, my mum was dying of cancer, so I didn't want to send her to an early grave or make my parents suffer more with such news. I also have a problem with porn and masturbation, which I'm trying to stop. I haven't touched the Lord's supper for months. I just feel like I've done so many wrong things, repented the same wrongs more than once, and I'm not worthy of His love or forgiveness. I have a boyfriend I've slept with before but it didn't sit right with me, so I told him we had to stop. I was following the desires of the flesh. I want to be closer to God. Am I worthy after all those wrongs?


Answer:

My dear, even the best mankind has ever produced is not worthy of God's gift. But then it has never been about earning God's respect. It has always been about God's love for us. "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation" (Romans 5:8-11).

It has never been about God's refusal of people wanting to leave sin. The problem has always been with men. We're the ones who left God, and too often we are the ones who stay away from God. You feel that God should not forgive you, but God isn't like you. "Seek the LORD while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the LORD, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon. "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," says the LORD. "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts"" (Isaiah 55:6-9). The only one I see holding back is you.

Did you sin, yes. But God is greater than your sins. "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (I John 1:8-9).

Does the fact that you sinned knowingly or repeatedly enter the matter? Here the answer is no. Jesus instructed us to forgive one another. "And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you, saying, 'I repent,' you shall forgive him" (Luke 17:4). God doesn't ask of us any more than He Himself offers. "And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you" (Ephesians 4:32).

Isn't it past time to move beyond mere talk and start living? "Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does" (James 1:21-25).

Thank you very much. I have truly been holding back. A part of that was to test myself. I did not want to start partaking in the Lord's Supper before making sure that I conquer most of my demons. There is a verse that says 'There remaineth no sacrifice for our sins.' It also made me think a lot. Could you explain it to me? Thank you very much.

"For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries" (Hebrews 10:27).

The writer's point is similar to an earlier statement: "For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame" (Hebrews 6:4-6). The point is that there is only one way to salvation and that is through Jesus Christ's sacrifice. "Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). If a person purposely turns his back on Christ, going back into sin, there isn't any other avenue by which he can't reach heaven. There is no other sacrifice that will atone for his sins. Because a person chooses to go back into sin, then the blood of Christ cannot benefit him.

The warning in Hebrews 6:4-6 is that those who remain faithful have no means to bring a person back since the person rejected the only means of salvation.

Neither verse states that a person can't come back on his own. But if a person purposely leaves, they need to realize that they can't find their own way to salvation. Neither statement applies to you unless you choose not to come back to Christ.