Micah 7:18-19 – Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity
and passing over the transgression
of the remnant of your possession?
He does not retain his anger forever,
because he delights in showing clemency.
He will again have compassion upon us;
he will tread our iniquities under foot.
You will cast all our sins
into the depths of the sea.
He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in showing clemency.
Does that mean that God doesn’t mind that we do bad things? I don’t think that’s what it means, I just think it means He knows our sins have been dealt with on the cross. He knows our hearts and our intentions. He knows whether or not we are seeking to be more like Him or if we don’t care about having a relationship with Him. He knows our heart, and like a father forgives the daughter he loves so much, God forgives us. He looks into our eyes and says, “come here and give me a hug.” Not only does he not hold onto His anger forever, He likes to be lenient, to be gracious and merciful.
Maybe an even closer analogy is the love of a grandparent. Grandparents love their grandchildren so much. The often see the stupidity or recklessness of their grandchildren, but when the child’s parent tries to discipline them, the grandparent may say something like, “They didn’t mean to. Please don’t be mad at them.” Like a grandparent shows clemency so God shows us clemency. I know that I’ve told this story before, but it’s my best example of my mother’s clemency. She used to pray that I would not get the full consequences of my sin. She knew as I grew up there would be times that I would be stupid, make bad decisions and probably deserved to get in trouble. My mom didn’t want me to get away with things. She knew I had some lessons to learn, but I think she really didn’t want me to end up in jail or pregnant. By the clemency of God (and some prayers on my moms part) I was not given the full consequences of my sins.
You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.
God, through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, has removed our sins and taken them as far away from us as possible. We don’t have to keep thinking about them. We don’t have to try to pay for them by self-loathing, over compensating or self-neglect. We can, because of what He’s done for us, freely explore the life of significance the Lord has designed for us. We no longer are held captive by the sin of this world. Close your eyes and imagine the Lord taking all your sins from you. Make sure you open the closet of your heart and give Him the ones that are still eating away at your soul. Then imagine you can see Him throwing them down to the depths of the sea. The will never be brought back up by the Lord, make sure you don’t go diving for them.
You have been shown clemency!