5 Myths about God’s Forgiveness

July 2, 2021 // 48 Comments

No religion preaches the complete forgiveness of sins like Christianity. You might say it’s one of our unique selling points. So why do we do such a bad job with it? We tell people God may forgive them if they say the right words and keep on the straight and narrow, and then we try and pass off this awful [...]

How your Bible may be ruining the Gospel

December 29, 2016 // 57 Comments

My wife is a good cook. She does a Danish roast with crackling pork and all the trimmings that is second-to-none. In fact, she is preparing a sumptuous roast dinner as I write. I’m practically drooling on the keyboard. Knowing that my wife is a good cook, which of these two sentences do you prefer? 1. Camilla [...]

Love Keeps No Record of Wrongs

October 6, 2016 // 72 Comments

Have you heard the one about how God is recording everything you say and do, and on Judgment Day he’ll show all your dark, dirty secrets on a big TV screen? It’s a frightening thought—but it’s a fiction. God is not like that. God is love, and love keeps no record of wrongs. Not a diary, not a videotape, [...]

Does James 5:15 preach conditional forgiveness?

September 2, 2016 // 52 Comments

Those who put price tags on grace sometimes point to this verse: The prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. (James 5:15) “See – you have to confess and pray to be forgiven,” they say. “If you don’t do these [...]

Did Jesus put price tags on forgiveness? (Matthew 6:14-15)

August 6, 2015 // 69 Comments

The gospel that Jesus revealed declares that God loves you like a father, he holds nothing against you, and he longs for his sons and daughters to come home. It’s the good news an orphaned world desperately needs to hear. So why did Jesus say this: For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your [...]

Is Forgiveness Like a Debit Card?

July 17, 2015 // 49 Comments

Are you completely forgiven or partly forgiven? It’s a simple question that reveals whether you appreciate all Christ did for you on the cross. Recently I heard a critic of the grace message say two contradictory statements: Christ paid for your complete redemption (amen!) but you are not completely forgiven [...]

Is it wrong to ask God for forgiveness?

November 13, 2014 // 111 Comments

“Beware the grace Pharisees who jump on you if you dare to ask God for forgiveness. They will say you’re operating in unbelief and legalism.” This claim is sometimes made against those who preach grace. Because we say God has forgiven all your sins, apparently it’s wrong to ask him to forgive you. [...]

1 John 1:9 – Ask the Right Question

June 3, 2014 // 85 Comments

In many grace books it is common to find some discussion on 1 John 1:9. This verse is special because it is the only verse in the new covenant that appears to link confession of sins with God’s forgiveness. In his book Pure Grace, Clark Whitten writes: Whenever the subjects of sin and the need of confession are [...]

Is Forgiveness Something God Does or Gives?

June 20, 2012 // 46 Comments

When you sin against someone, your relationship with that person comes under strain. There’s this Thing that comes between the two of you. To be reconciled you need to deal with the Thing. Jesus said if you are bringing your gift to the altar and you remember your brother has some Thing against you, go and deal [...]

1 John 1:9 – Something old, something new

June 8, 2012 // 71 Comments

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” What’s the problem with 1 John 1:9? The problem is that it’s in the wrong part of the Bible. It’s a classic piece of old covenant theology that somehow found its way into the new. It’s on [...]