WELCOME to episode #115 as we seek from Scripture the answer to the question “Why should God pardon my guilt? Why should The Holy, Righteous, Pure, Sovereign, Almighty Creator of the Universe forgive me? After all, I have repeatedly turned my back on Him. I’m guilty of worshiping a false god. And I’ve chosen time and again the temporary pleasure the flesh gives vs. the eternal pleasures God gives. Why shouldn’t He turn His back on me?
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I’m your host, Steve Etner, author, speaker, and purity coach for The Pure Man Ministry ... WELCOME to episode #115 as we seek from Scripture the answer to the question “Why should God pardon my guilt? Why should The Holy, Righteous, Pure, Sovereign, Almighty Creator of the Universe forgive me? After all, I have repeatedly turned my back on Him. I’m guilty of worshiping a false god. And I’ve chosen time and again the temporary pleasure the flesh gives vs. the eternal pleasures God gives. Why shouldn’t He turn His back on me?
This week’s episode is entitled “The Best Reason of All!”
Let me take a moment here and open this episode with prayer. “Make us to know your ways, O Lord; teach us your paths. Lead us in your truth and teach us, for you are the God of our salvation; for you we gladly wait all day long.” Father, we take a moment right now and ask you to “show us now your ways, that we may know you” and to “Open our eyes, that we may behold wondrous things out of your law.” Father, you have promise us that when we ask in faith – believing that you hear us, “it will be given to us; as we seek, your promise is that we will find; and when we knock, your promise is that it will be opened to us.” So, Father, right now we boldy – yet humbly – ask you to show us your ways, teach us your paths, and guide us into your Truth. Amen.
In Psalm 25:11 David writes, “For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.”
How great is your guilt before a Holy God? In a previous episode I asked you to consider how many times today alone you have sinned against God. How many times, just today, have you been guilty of idolatry–guilty of worshiping yourself instead of God? How many times this week? How many times last week? What about this month, last month? This year, last year, or over your entire lifespan? How great is your guilt before a holy God!
In light of that, I ask: Why should God pardon your guilt? Why should The Holy, Righteous, Pure, Sovereign, Almighty Creator of the Universe forgive you? You have repeatedly turned your back on Him. You are guilty of idolatry. You have been worshiping a false god. You have chosen time and again the temporary pleasure the flesh gives vs. the eternal pleasures God gives (Psalm 16:11). Why shouldn’t He turn His back on you?
The answer is clearly stated in Scripture. “For the Lord will not forsake his people, for his great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you a people for himself.” (1 Samuel 12:22) “Yet he saved (you) for his name’s sake, that he might make known his mighty power.” (Psalm 106:8) Truly God is “my rock and my fortress; for (His) name’s sake (He) will lead me and guide me.” (Psalm 31:3) “And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways, nor according to your corrupt deeds.” (Ezekiel 20:44)
Someone may try to insert the argument here that these passages I just quoted were written to the Children of Israel, God’s chosen people, not to us today. Therefore, the text is saying that God will not forsake Israel, for his great name’s sake. While yes, it is true that this verse is speaking directly to the Jewish nation, it is also equally as true that it is speaking to us as 21st Century Christians as well.
“For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” (Romans 15:4)
“Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.” (1 Corinthians 10:11)
The fact is, if you are a born-again believer having placed your faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross of Calvary, you have been “born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1 Peter 1:3b-5)
As a Christian, you “are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that (you) should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10 addition mine.) “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” (1 Peter 2:9).
“All glory to him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by shedding his blood for us. He has made us a Kingdom of priests for God his Father.” (Revelation 1:5b-6)
Jesus “gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.” (Titus 2:14)
God’s Word is telling us that “the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.” (1 John 5:20) This is why you can rejoice that although “at one time you were darkness, ... now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light.” (Ephesians 5:8) Never forget that Jesus “has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son.” (Colossians 1:13)
So, when we read verses in the Bible like Ezekiel 20:44 we can rejoice that the truth God is speaking to the nation of Israel is the same truth He is speaking into our hearts as well.
Here’s what Ezekiel 20:44 says: “You shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways, nor according to your corrupt deeds.” (Ezekiel 20:44)
In Ezekiel 36:22 we read, “Thus says the Lord God: It is not for your sake ... that I am about to act, but for the sake of my holy name, which you have profaned among the nations to which you came.”
I want you to listen these next thirteen words closely and carefully. Let them sink deep into your heart. Here they are: “For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.” (Psalm 25:11) Pause for a moment here and contemplate them. Let me repeat them. Consider the impact of them. For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.” (Psalm 25:11) “Your sins are forgiven for his name’s sake.” (1 John 2:12)
I know we’ve already talked about this, but it bears repeating yet again. Think about your sins, your guilt. Carefully consider all of the selfish, self-centered, egotistical King Me, idolatrous choices you have made over your lifetime. Contemplate how many times over the years you have been guilty of worshiping a false God. Ponder the punishment each and every one of those individual sinful choices deserve (Romans 6:23; Romans 5:12; Matthew 25:46).
Do you have that solidly fixed in your mind? Now listen to the words of Jeremiah. “Though our iniquities testify against us, act, O Lord, for your name’s sake; for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against you.” (Jeremiah 14:7)
Jeremiah is telling us that though our sins against God are many, though they bear witness against us, and though they blatantly stand out in stark contrast against a Holy God – the sovereign Creator of the Universe, the Savior of your soul, God Himself will still act, God will still forgive, God will restore you “for His name’s sake!”
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
“I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,’ and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah.” (Psalm 32:5)
In Psalm 25:11 David is crying out, “For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.” Can you relate? “Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.” (Psalm 51:2-3). Praise God for His promise that “I will cleanse them from all the guilt of their sin against me, and I will forgive all the guilt of their sin and rebellion against me” (Jeremiah 33:8)!
Do you remember our discussion of Psalm 25:1? “To you O Lord, I lift up my soul.” Do you remember the challenge given to choose daily to lift up your soul to God? When you do that, “he restores (your) soul. He leads (you) in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” (Psalm 23:3 additions mine) God is, and always will be, your “rock and (your) fortress; and for (His) name’s sake (He) leads (you) and guides (you).” (Psalm 31:3 additions mine)
Are you picking up on a recurring theme in this podcast? “For your name’s sake, O Lord” we are forgiven! You may recall that we shared in a previous episode that everything God does, everything, is – and always will be – “for His name’s sake.”
For example, in Psalm 23:3 David says that God “restores my soul; he guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” Think about that. If you have placed your faith in Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection as the sole requirement for your salvation, God has rescued you. He has redeemed you. He has restored you into a right relationship with Him. Even now He guides you, He teaches you, He leads you and shows you what is right and how-to live-in freedom and victory.
Why? Why does the Almighty, thrice-holy creator of the Universe do that for you? It’s definitely NOT because of who you are. Certainly not because of what you’ve done (or not done). And definitely not because you deserve His favor in any way. No. It’s only because of His name’s sake. It’s solely because of who He is. He is your rescuer. He is your redeemer and your restorer. He is your guide, your teacher, your leader ... your Savior. It’s not just what He does but it’s who He is. And David is declaring that it is solely because of who God is that you and I are who we are in Christ – a born again, rescued, redeemed, and restored child of God.
In Ezekiel 20:44 God says, “You will know that I am the Lord when I have dealt with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways or according to your corrupt deeds.” Oh, we must hit the pause button here. Can you imagine, can you even begin to fully fathom what you deserve because of your idolatry – because of your worship of King Me instead of God? This bears repeating: Every time (let this sink in – every time) you choose to make life about yourself; each and every time (with each and every selfish, self-centered choice) you are choosing to worship a false god. You are guilty of committing idolatry. You have sinned. Because of that sin you are in desperate need of forgiveness, redemption, rescue.
In Romans 3:23 God clearly states that the wages of that sin, the paycheck you and I deserve to receive for the sinful, King Me things we have done throughout our life, that which is owed us, is eternal separation from God. An eternity in the pit of Hell itself. So, imagine for just a moment what your evil ways and your corrupt deeds truly deserve. Again, I repeat, this is why we so desperately need Divine intervention in our life.
Ok, do you have that firmly fixed in your mind? Do you understand the seriousness and significance of every sinful choice you have ever made (no matter how big or small it may be to you)? Now listen once again to what God is saying in Ezekiel 20:44. “You will know that I am the Lord when I have dealt with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways or according to your corrupt deeds.” Let me take a moment and quote Ezekiel 20:44 to you one more time so that you are able to fully grasp what God is saying. “You will know that I am the Lord when I have dealt with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways or according to your corrupt deeds.”
My friend, do you know Christ as your Lord and Savior? Have you put your faith in Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross? Do you believe with all your heart that Jesus willingly took your place, your penalty, your punishment for your sin upon Himself? Do you acknowledge the fact that Jesus Christ took the full brunt of God’s wrath for your sin? Not for anything that He had done, but for all that you have done. Do you believe that Jesus experienced not just death on the cross but utter and complete separation from God the Father in the very pit of Hell itself? He paid the FULL PRICE for all of your sin (and mine too)!
Do you truly believe that Jesus Christ rose from the dead and that He is alive today sitting at the right hand of God the Father functioning not just as your redeemer but as your intercessor? If you are a born-again believer, a Christian, then know this my friend: The King of kings and Lord of lords – The Almighty, Most Holy, Sovereign God and Creator of the Universe has chosen to deal with you NOT according to what you deserve but according to who He is! Not in His righteous wrath but in His infinite love. For His name’s sake.
David writes in Psalm 103:10-14 that God “has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to our guilty deeds. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his mercy toward those who fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our wrongdoings from us. Just as a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him. For he himself knows our form; he is mindful that we are nothing but dust.”
I cannot drive this point home hard enough. Everything God does is for His Name’s sake! No other name. God’s holy name. Everything that God does is all done for God’s glory. He takes the credit, He takes top billing, not because He needs it, not because He desires it, certainly not because He wants to take it away from you, but because He knows you cannot handle it!
OK, we’re going to hit the pause button here until next week’s episode as we look forward to continuing this study.
If you would like to learn more about today’s study, or if you’re interested in learning more about our ministry, be sure to visit our website to see the multitude of resources we’ve made available to you – you can find our website at ThePurityCoach.com
In fact, let me take just a moment and give you a glimpse into our ministry. You see, we do a whole lot more here at The Pure Man Ministry than just producing a weekly podcast. We have a free APP entitled “My Purity Coach.” This app is chocked full of powerful tools to help you in your walk of purity. You’ll find tons of Scripture. Audio and video lessons from the Bible. You listen to this podcast from the app. You can even watch the globally acclaimed video series called “The Chosen” from this app!
If you’re a subscriber to this podcast, then you’ve heard me talk about our “Point of Purity Program” – a 12 week, 1-on-1, Bible-Centered coaching program taking you deep into Scripture to teach you how to develop a lifelong strategic plan for sexual purity. I’ve also talked on this podcast about the various books I have written which are all available both on my website (ThePurityCoach.com) and on Amazon.
As a faith-based, donor-supported ministry, all of this (and so much more) is only made possible by our team of ministry partners who give financially to this ministry. Without compromise The Pure Man Ministry shows men and women how to have a continuous relationship with Jesus that is real and personal. To that end we need ongoing financial assistance from partners like you who are committed to providing hope and helping men and women across the globe win their personal battle against the beast of sexual impurity. I am personally inviting you to partner with us as we seek to impact our world by equipping and training men and women how-to live-in purity, godliness, and integrity through the study and application of God’s Word to their lives. To give your tax deductible gift to this ministry today, simply go to ThePurityCoach.com and click on the Donate button in the upper right corner. And thank you for partnering with us!
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So, until next time this is Author, Speaker, and Purity Coach Steve Etner reminding you that if you are going to glorify God in your everyday living, He must first be glorified in your every moment thinking.