So I halfheartedly thanked God for sending Jesus to die for my sins, and something in my spirit rose up and spoke to my natural mind, saying, “Something is really wrong with this. Why do I have to remind myself to be thankful for Jesus? Shouldn’t that be naturally flowing out of me?”
You see, when we are all wrapped up in our own performance and our sins, we aren’t wrapped up in Jesus. I was not wrapped up in Jesus because I did not know the extent that I was forgiven. I would say, “Jesus died for our sins,” but did I really believe that? No, Jesus and his sacrifice were not the focus of my thoughts and praise because I thought I could sin away my salvation and that I had to confess every sin and ask for forgiveness each time I messed up. Hebrews 9:12 says, “Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with his own blood he entered the most holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.”
Eternal redemption, not temporary based on our performance. I was so performance based in my walk with God that I couldn’t receive that word. Every night before I would go to bed I would think of my sins and ask God to forgive me for each one and for all the sins I didn’t know I had committed. Sin consciousness is a huge trait of not having revelation of the new covenant of grace, which I did not have. It is having the old covenant mind-set of focusing on our own wrong doing instead of what Jesus came here to do for us.
Hebrews 10:1-2 says, “For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins.”
The law and the sacrifices that were offered under the law didn’t take away sins, but rather just temporarily covered them. That is why they had to continually offer them. Those sacrifices were a shadow of the true sacrifice that was to come, Jesus, who became our sacrifice once and for all. He didn’t just cover our sins. He took them away. Now instead of living in sin consciousness, we should be living in a state of forgiveness consciousness.
Let me tell you about my life now. Because I have a deeper revelation of what Jesus actually did for me, when the devil comes knocking on my door to try to condemn me, or if I start to do it to myself after I mess up, I remember him. It doesn’t always come naturally because I was wired differently for so long, but it takes me renewing my mind to what he has done. I remember that he was condemned in my place so that I don’t have to be condemned (Romans 8:1-3). I remember that every sin I will ever commit was already placed on his innocent, loving body (Colossians 2:13, Isaiah 54:6).
Every time I am tempted to reflect on how bad I messed up the Holy Spirit gently reminds me how that does a disservice to him and what he has done for me. Then I start praising him for what he has done when I did nothing to deserve it.
You can’t behold Jesus and his sacrifice and not become thankful toward him for it. Instead of walking in a state of sin consciousness, I walk in a state of forgiveness consciousness through remembering and honoring what Jesus has done. It has transformed me and made me want to devote my entire life to living for him and his glory. Now I serve out of love for him because of his love for me, instead of fear of punishment. It is such a freeing, life-altering way to live that I pray all can experience it.
Amber can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or through her AmberRiceMiller Facebook page.
Published: July 26, 2016