MAR 29
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March 29, 2023 · Bob Gass

Don’t look back (1)

“Do not dwell on the past…I am doing a new thing!” Isaiah 43:18-19 NIV

In the words of the legendary baseball player Satchel Paige, “Don’t look back. Something might be gaining on you.” That’s good advice! Paul bottom-lined it like this: “Focus on…Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead” (Philippians 3:13 NLT). Author Ellen Vaughn wrote, “Before our spiritual vitality can really flow, we must forget three things. (1) We must forget our sins. Obviously we must remember our sins in order to confess them. But having done so, we must let them go. The fact that God forgets is like calling heaven and hearing, ‘There is no record of any offense.’ They’re expunged, as if they never existed. Satan would lure us to live in guilt and fear. He pulls us into the shadowboxes of memory in which our worst sins replay on the walls of our minds…We need to be very clear here, or we’ll miss the liberating point. It’s not as if forgiveness is real only if we experience some kind of holy amnesia. It’s not up to us. It’s up to God. And the scriptures say that God forgets our sins (see Hebrews 8:12). (2) We must forget our shame. Paul could have been a prime candidate for shame. He had presided over the harassment, imprisonment, torture, and murder of innocent human beings. But God’s grace is stronger than our shame. It was defanged when Jesus died and rose again. We can forget our slithering shame, for Jesus took it. He scorned it, beat it, broke it. We need not take it back.” The word for you today is – “Do not dwell on the past…I am doing a new thing.”

Bible in a year: Joshua 22-24

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