David had committed adultery with Bathsheba while her husband was on the battle field. After discovering she was pregnant, he brought her husband home from the field to lie with her in order to cover up his sin, but he refused to. So David put him on the front lines where he would likely be killed, and he was. The Lord gave David plenty of time to repent, but when he didn’t, the Lord sent Nathan who was a prophet to confront him. The guilt tore him up and he became physically sick (Ps. 32:3,4). He finally confessed his transgressions to the Lord, and he was forgiven (vs. 5).

Many people like David are physically sick for psychosomatic illnesses caused by guilt and shame. Confession and repentance brings reconciliation with God and a tremendous sense of relief. “Blessed is he who transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit” (vs. 1,2).

Paul reveals the process of our reconciliation with God in Rom. 5:8-11: “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! For if, when we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! Not only is this so, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.”

God proves His love by initiating this reconciliation toward us while we are still sinners. But it is not enough to know that God loves us if we are still unforgiven. He loves us enough to sacrifice His only Son for our sins in order that we would be saved from His wrath. But it is not enough to know that we have been saved from hell if we are still spiritually dead. Salvation in Christ brings us much more than the forgiveness of sins. It brings us spiritual life in Christ. But it is not enough to know that we are forgiven and spiritually alive. We have been reconciled to God. We are no longer alienated from Him. “In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence” (Eph. 3:12).

We may never be in the presence of today’s leaders or celebrities, or have an audience with them, but as children of God we have access to our Heavenly Father twenty-four hours of every day. Our Holy Father wants to have a relationship with us. “All of this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: That God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God” (2 Cor. 5:18-20).

Dr. Neil

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