Reading: Exodus 34:5-7 and Psalm 32
God is also abounding in goodness and truth (or: abounding in love and faithfulness). This refers to God’s covenant promises and faithfulness. When God promises to love His covenant people, He always loves them. His love and faithfulness are abounding; that is, without limit. Psalm 36:5 “Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.” Psalm 89:33-34 “Nevertheless My lovingkindness I will not utterly take from him, nor allow My faithfulness to fail. My covenant I will not break, nor alter the word that has gone out of My lips.”
God is also forgiving. In Hebrew “forgiving” means to lift or carry away. God lifts our sins from our shoulders and carries them away, placing them on Jesus Christ’s shoulders. He carries God’s wrath for us. God also describes what he forgives, namely “iniquity, and transgression, and sin”. Iniquity is to turn away from what is right. Transgression is being wilfully disobedient, breaking the relationship with God. Sin refers to other kinds of weakness and failures. In other words God is willing to forgive all sins (except one – see Luke 12:10). Sometimes we feel heavily burdened by our sins because they are too many or too serious; we think that God’s grace can no longer reach us; that we cannot be forgiven. But look, God says He forgives all sin. He carries them far away. “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12). How blessed we are because our sins are forgiven (Palm 32). What great comfort our loving Father gives us.
Our sinful minds cannot understand the greatness of God’s goodness and forgiveness. Therefore God reveals it to us in His written word and convinces us by the secret influence of His Holy Spirit. This gives us real assurance, lest we feel our salvation is wavering and insecure.
Question: Identify two examples from the Bible where God shows He is forgiving. Explain the circumstances of each example.