“If we are faithless, He will remain faithful, for He cannot disown Himself. 2 Timothy 2:13
I am so grateful to know that when I fail in my efforts to be faithful to God, He will still be faithful to me.
I had planned a bright, cheery devotional for today’s post, but a long-time sin reared its ugly head in me yesterday. When I realized I had again failed in this stronghold, I went into that pit of hating myself. And that is just where Satan wanted me to go. The fiery darts started hitting me: “You failed again – you are so weak. Look at you – a Bible teacher and writer – you should know better. God is disgusted with you!” Even as I prayed in confession and repentance, the enemy taunted me –”You have no right to ask anything of God now. And what about all those people you have been praying for – what will happen to them now that you’ve FAILED?”
That is when the sweet, sweet Spirit of Christ brought 2 Timothy 2:13 to my mind. “God will remain faithful.” Oh surely I am not the only one who needs to hear that today. In Paul’s letter to the Romans he offered us this assurance – “Will their lack of faith nullify God’s faithfulness? Not at all! (Romans 3:3)” That is good news to those of us who stumble and fall. God’s faithfulness is based on who He is, as 2 Tim 2:13 says – it is not just one of His characteristics, it is His very nature. You cannot be so perfect in your Christian walk to encourage His faithfulness, nor can you be so imperfect to cause Him to abandon you to your sin.
Psalm 103:14 says “He knows how we are formed, He remembers that we are dust.” By definition, this means that God knows our “inclinations, motivations and desires.” In other words, He knows what makes us do the things we do, even if we don’t; things that Paul attested “I hate I do. (Romans 7:15)” This is the beauty of His mercy. He knows that we are dust, but He loves us and sent His Son to rescue and redeem us. He did not wait until we “got our act together.” Romans 5:8 tells us “God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” His mercy is the evidence of His love for us.
Satan would have us believe that God is ready to write us off because of our human failings or that we have to beg and grovel for His forgiveness, but that is far from the truth of God’s heart. He is more than willing to forgive us our sins and restore us to wholeness. 1 John 1:9 assures us that “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Listen to His beautiful promise from Hebrews 8:12 – “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” Does that sound like He forgives begrudgingly? Let your heart sing with the Psalmists who wrote: “He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities (Psalm 103:10)” “If You, O Lord, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand? But with You there is forgiveness.( Psalm 130:3-4, emphasis mine)”
If He offered us so great a salvation at so great a cost, why would He keep us at arm’s length when we need Him the most? He said to the children of Israel, “The Lord did not set His affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other people, for you were the fewest of all people. But it was because he Lord loved you… (Deuteronomy 7:7” God did not choose you or me because we would always walk in perfection, never fail, never falter and never need to bother Him for forgiveness. He is drawn to us because He loves us, “warts and all.”
I came up off my knees this morning with a deeper appreciation for His great mercy, love and faithfulness, even, and especially, in the face of my failures and unfaithfulness. I have a richer understanding of 1 Peter 4:8 which says “Love covers over a multitude of sins.” The love of God the Father has faithfully covered over all my sins with the precious blood of Jesus Christ.
El Emunah – Faithful God – I am blessed because my transgressions are forgiven and my sins are covered by the blood of my Savior. You have redeemed my life from the pit and You crown me with love and compassion. (Psalm 32:1, 103:4) Amen.