Chapter 20: Forgiveness

Chapter 20: Forgiveness

Today I am writing about God’s forgiveness and how it is a free gift, how we immediately receive it when we accept Jesus’ gift of salvation, and how it frees us to get on with living.

It is the most amazing thing to be covered by the Lord Jesus Christ.  To be forgiven and able to have fellowship with God is a profound gift.

Because of the work of Jesus Christ, we are a forgiven people.

Now we know that the wages of sin is death:

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Romans 6:23 ESV

Jesus Christ, God coming in the form of a man, paid the price of our sin.

We are told that Jesus came born of a virgin, conceived by the Holy Spirit.  Jesus was both man and God.  And because he was fully God he was without sin.  Because he was fully man he could stand in the gap for man’s sin.

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel.”  Matthew 1:23 ESV

Jesus came to set things right, and that is exactly what he did.

Dying a criminal’s death when he was without sin, we are told that Jesus despised the shame.  He came intent on bringing life where there had been death.  He became the sacrificial lamb that paid for our sins.

“…looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”  Hebrews 12:2 ESV

In Exodus we see a beautiful picture of this on the last night of the Israelites sojourn in Egypt. The instructions from God were to kill a lamb and to smear its blood on the doorposts of their homes and when the angel of death came that night it would ‘pass-over’ the homes where this blood was.

“Then they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and the lintel of the houses in which they eat it… For I will pass through the land of Egypt that night, and I will strike all the firstborn of the land of Egypt, both man and beast… The blood shall be a sign for you, on the houses where you are.  And when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you.” Exodus 12: 7, 12a-13a ESV

The blood created a covering, a protection that marked these people as God’s and therefore death passed over.  The Israelites Passover was a sign of things to come in the form of Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ died and was raised to life to cover us, to bring us from a life of death to a life of real living.

“Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”  Romans 10:9 ESV

And with this came the forgiveness of sins.  Sins are covered over.  God sees us through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

He does not see us in our natural state, he sees us in light of what Jesus did for us.  We are made new creatures in Christ and we therefore have communion and fellowship with God.

“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.”  1 John 1:7 ESV

God offers us opportunity to focus on Him and to forget our sin.

When we accept Jesus Christ as Saviour, the work done to cover our sin by Jesus over 2000 years ago, comes forward through time and covers us now.  We are new creatures in Christ.

The act of Jesus Christ in dying and then rising from the dead works across time.

The payment for sin and the resulting forgiveness was applied back through time and then forward through time.

The writer of Psalms, long before Jesus’ coming, knew of the Lord’s forgiveness:

“But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared.”  Psalm 130:4 ESV

Daniel proclaimed:

“To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against him”  Daniel 9:9 ESV

The work of Jesus Christ on the cross is not bound by time.  It is a continuous present tense occurrence.

We do not have to work for our forgiveness.  We cannot work for our forgiveness.

Forgiveness has nothing to do with us.  We cannot create it, make it more or less, or manage it.

Forgiveness is a gift.

“Let it be known to you therefore, brothers, that through this man forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and by him everyone who believes is freed from everything…”  Acts 13:38-39a ESV

We either receive it or we push it away.

Having said that, receiving forgiveness can be hard work – because it is not about us.

In order to receive forgiveness we must put ourselves aside.

We must lay down our pride and accept that there is something that we cannot manage or make happen for ourselves.

Forgiveness is based on the character and work of God and God alone.  Forgiveness is not based on us.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”  Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV

Because forgiveness is based on the character of God and not us, it is always present.  It is always there.  It is always available and in fact we are covered in forgiveness immediately upon accepting Jesus Christ as our Saviour.

The moment we say, “Jesus I am a sinner, and I need your life, I accept your gift of life” We are forgiven.

We barely need ask for forgiveness, rather we simply receive it for God has already provided it. We must allow forgiveness to soak into our entire being; into our hearts and minds and spirits and bodies even.

Allowing and inviting God’s forgiveness to permeate our lives is our only work.  Although it is not really work, it is almost more an absence of work, because the work has been done by Jesus Christ.

We set aside our pride (the part of us that likes to take care of business), and we let this business be taken care of by the Lord.

“I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him.” Ecclesiastes 3:14 ESV

He has done this work.  We merely rest in it.  We say ‘Thank-you’ Father for forgiveness.

It is a work that was assigned to Jesus Christ, a work that He carried out to completion, and a work that we simply accept and receive as done on our behalf.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.”  John 3:16 ESV

And then we let that work of forgiveness and covering and life soak into our beings.  We receive it as the gift that it is.  We set aside our pride that screams, ‘I am not worthy’ and we simply say ‘thank-you’.

We get on with living.

We get on with serving.

We get on with loving the Lord our God.


“Father thank-you so much for making a way for us. For saving us from our sins, for covering us with the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. I receive this covering today and declare myself covered in the blood of the lamb.

I receive your forgiveness deep into every part of my being. May it soak into my very bones, into my emotions, my mind and the way I go about life. May I be marked by you and your grace and love and forgiveness. We bless you today God, in the name and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.”

Summary – forgiveness

God has forgiven us.  Psalm 130:4

We receive his forgiveness. Ephesians 1:7

We forgive others. 1 John 1:7

We put down our self effort. Ephesians 2:8-9

We walk in his light. (trusting Jesus for forgiveness, justification, and sanctification). 1 John 1:7

We fulfill the natural requirements of justice.  Leviticus 19:11, Romans 13:7

We act out the ‘rightness’ of God.  Amos 5:24, Leviticus 19:15Application

In this quest to fully receive forgiveness into our hearts it is important to note that it is also often necessary to fulfill the natural requirements of justice. 

What I mean is this.  First, as we bring our sins to God there are things we have done that need to be spoken out loud and that must be confessed.  Second, some sins require that we do what we can to make them right, in some cases, that we pay the penalty required by human law for that sin. 

Through-out this course you have become familiar with the healing prayer model that the Lord has taught for the freedom of hearts and minds.  We can take this same model and use it for the healing of our consciences when we are burdened with sins that seem too great to be free from.  As I said, some of our sins require that justice takes place, and this healing model can guide us in this. 

Healing Model For Justice

NOTE: Healing Model for Justice is based on principles and process from freedom but uses our own Healing Prayer Model as found here.

1. CONFESSION: we speak out our specific sin 

Our healing has been made to happen within the body of Christ. It is why it says in James 5:16, “Confess your sins to one another so that you may be healed.”

We have committed sins that weigh heavy on us. And forgiveness can only permeate our lives when we have spoken these sins out to a trustworthy and compassionate person within the body of Christ. 

Speaking out our sin is very hard to do but in the process of speaking out our sin we enter into a greater level of honesty and from this place we can enter into a grief and sorrow for our sins that is both healing and restorative. 

We do not want to remain in layers of cover-up about what we have done and the have we have caused to others. We want to bring it all out and into the open. Confession does this. 

2. REPENTANCE: we recognize the hurt we have caused and we grieve

As we speak out our sins we will come into Godly grief and repentance and we will be saved from worldly grief which the Bible describes as deadly. 

“For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.” 2 Corinthians 7:10

It is important that we come into true sorrow and repentance for the sins we have committed. Repentance is something we avoid and yet it is the key to our freedom. 

3. RENOUNCING: we go to the person we have hurt and we confess 

In the healing prayer model renouncing is where we figuratively stand up and declare alongside the Lord Jesus Christ that we want nothing more to do with our heart sin. As we work with sins that require justice we want to take renouncing into action. Rather than just our words that say, ‘No more!’ we want to declare ‘No more!’ in action. 

The first way that we act out our renouncing is to confess our sin to the person that we have sinned against. It is to own up to what we did wrong, to come in humility and repentance to the very person we have most harmed. It is to say, “I did this to you.” 

“Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord. Acts 3:19-20a ESV

4. BREAKING: we take action to make right what we did wrong

The second way to act out our renouncing through action is to take physical responsibility for the sin. It is to bring recompense to the one we have hurt and harmed. When we take the responsibility to try and set right what we did that was wrong, we are breaking that sins hold upon us and upon the other person. 

By our actions, by our humility required in the action, we declare a full stop to the impact of that sin. We break its hold on us. Action takes us beyond words and enters us into the restoration of our lives. 

“For the Kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power.” 1 Corinthians 4:20a ESV

5. CANCELLING: forgiving ourselves and other involved individuals

Cancelling is about forgiving ourselves. It is important that we agree with the forgiveness of the Lord over our own lives. Cancelling may also be about forgiving anyone we believe is complicit in our sin, and it may even include giving up our bitterness against God. 

KEY: We take action to express forgiveness. You  might make a meal that you present to yourself or symbolically to God, to indicate that you are letting the past be the past and that you are ready to move into the future; through this meal of reconciliation you extend forgiveness to yourself, and as you eat this meal you extend forgiveness to God. 

“Judge not, and you will not be judged, condemn not, and you will not be condemned, forgive, and you will be forgiven, give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:37-38 ESV

6. CLAIMING: we take God’s word into our lives

In order to remain free it is important to allow the word of God to penetrate our hearts and minds. As the Psalmist declared, 

“I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you… I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways. I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word.” Psalm 119:11,15-16

The first thing to do (if you do not have a Bible) is to get yourself a Bible. Pray about this, express your need to the Lord, and then make a plan for how you might put money aside, or how you might plant a little more maize, until you have enough to get a Bible. Make the Bible a priority in your life. 

Then, once you have a Bible take a little bit of time to read each and every day. It is best if you read only a little bit each time. If we read too much at one time we cannot meditate on it for we have too much information in our heads at one time; just read a little bit each day. Then, ask the Holy Spirit to teach you and then continue to think about what you have been reading. Day by day, bit by bit, you will find yourself transformed by the word of God. 

7. SEALING: we serve Jesus by helping others 

We take action to encourage and to be there for others who are also bringing their sins and regrets to the Lord. If we are gifted with kindness and grace then we may be the one who listens to the confessions of others.

Or we may minister to those in our communities by helping widows in their gardens, by taking hot meals to widows, by making clothes for children, by doing the laundry of an elderly person who cannot manage this on their own – there are multiple ways that we can give back to our communities and can serve Jesus as we help others. 

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me… Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these, ‘my brothers’, you did it to me.’” Matthew 25:34-36,40

As we are freed by the Lord Jesus we are freed to be the kingdom of God in this world; instead of just talking about God’s ways, we live God’s ways. 

healing model for justice picture

healing model for justice picture 2


You have completed a very difficult exercise.  But it is the beginning of a heart skill that will enable you to be free of anything that is weighing you down. 

The ability to come into confession and repentance, not only before God, but before our fellow mankind, is an incredibly valuable skill. 

The perseverance and intention to set things right (to the best of our ability) is another great life habit that will enter you into the pleasure and presence of God in a new way. 

We hold these things that we have done wrong, the regrets of our earlier days, between ourselves and God and between ourselves and other people.  But when we take the responsibility for what has gone wrong and for the wrong that we have done we participate in taking these things down, and we find new fellowship and new peace with both God and others. 

Continue to use this tool for everything that the Holy Spirit brings to your attention.  Bit by bit come in this kind of transparency before God and others and you will find your life freed and whole in the Lord. 

Freedom in God is a process. It is not a one-prayer kind of thing.  And it is not about God just healing us either.  We must do our part in coming before him with our open, whole, hearts.  We bring to God all the good, the bad, and the ugly of our lives and then he has the freedom to heal and to restore our lives. 

Chapter 4. Repentance

Chapter 4.  Repentance

per — Capturing God’s Heart Volume #28

There is a time for celebration and rejoicing and for worshiping God, and then there is a time for mourning and grieving and laying bare our deeds before the Lord.

Consider what James says,

“Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.  Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.  Be wretched and mourn and weep.  Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.  Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.”  James 4:8-10 ESV

Admitting that we have done wrong is one of the most freeing experiences.  Repentance is deep intimacy with The Father.

Yet it is not a normal human response to admit wrongdoing.  In fact, our natural response is to cover up and to hide our sins.

But think about it, when we cover up our sins we still have them with us.

They bury into our hearts and minds with the memory and emotions.  We are never free of our sin when we harbour it in our selves.

“Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”  Proverbs 28:13 ESV 

At the very beginning when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden we see this propensity to cover over our sin.  We read,

“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.”  Genesis 3:8  NIV

We have been hiding ourselves ever since.

“But the LORD God called to the man,  “Where are you?”  He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”  And he said, “Who told you that you were naked?  Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”  The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”  Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”  The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”  Genesis 3:9-12 NIV 

Do you notice the excuses, the blaming, the rationalizations?  Don’t we all continue in sins of avoidance and fear, of shame and covering over?

The man blamed the woman (9), the woman blamed the serpent, and ever since we have been making excuses and blaming others.  We have been unable to admit our wrong and have carried death as a result.

God saw this and understood the depths of the problem.  Shame was coiled around us, guilt was heaped on our heads, and we were emotionally and psychologically unable to admit wrong.  We are fearful of the exposure that confession requires.

Then in verse 21 we read,  “The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.”  Genesis 3:21 NIV

In one amazing act of grace, God, who made all things unto life, now kills an animal/s in order to provide a covering and to remove shame.

In a powerful prophetic act looking ahead to the cross, God takes on our sin and death so that we might be all that God originally intended.

“For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”  2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV 

God was committed to our covering and our keeping right from the start, and has since played that out through Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection.  Our sin is buried with Christ when we accept his salvation and turn from our wrongs.

In fact, the blood covering of Christ is the only thing that truly covers our sin and washes it away.

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.  By his wounds you have been healed.”  1 Peter 2:24 ESV 

Imagine in your mind’s eye the cross of Jesus Christ.  And imagine the blood that fell from Christ onto the ground at the foot of that cross.

Imagine that you bring your sins and lay them down at the foot of the cross, and imagine that Christ’s blood, as it soaks into the ground, takes your sin with it.

Burying the sin, washing the sin away, covering over the sin.

This is the work of Christ, not us.  We cannot bury our own sin.  We cannot cover over our own sin.  Only Christ can do this.

When we try to cover over our own sin we simply become hardened of heart.  In trying to keep our sin secret we build a wall between ourself and God.

READ all of Psalm 32

If you think that you are above sin, consider this verse,  “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”  Luke 5:32 NIV

It is imperative that all of us, no matter our station or influence, allow repentance.  The leaders amongst us should be the first on our knees before the Lord, the first to repent and to enter into a contrition of spirit before the Lord.

Let us never forget that,  “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”  Psalms 34:18 ESV

And that,  “As the scripture says,  “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’ ”  James 4:6b NLT

We are given a conscience, a knowledge built into us, of right and wrong.  And when we violate this sense of right and wrong we have only two choices.

One, we labor under the sin, trying to get free, cover it over ourselves, hide it, but then like anything that goes bad we are simply left with a poison in our hearts and minds.  We are not free, we are caught.  And there is a deep divide between ourselves and God.

There is a better way.  Our second option is to confess our sins to God and each other.

“Yet even now,” declares the Lord,  “return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; and rend your hearts and not your garments.” Return to the Lord your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and he relents over disaster.”  Joel 2: 12-13 ESV 

Bringing our sin out into the open allows the light of Christ to come upon it and us.  And in the shift deep within our being as we bring our wrongs into the light, we find that we are given the gift of sorrow and grief and mourning.  We come near to God in humility and repentance.

We grieve over our sin.  We acknowledge it.  We say, “I did this.”  And without excuse or blame we simply stand before the living God.

“As for me, I said,  “O Lord, be gracious to me; heal me, for I have sinned against you!”  Psalm 41:4 ESV

Instead of trying to cover over our own wrongs, we find that God then covers over our wrong. Jesus (who already took it over 2000 years ago) takes our sin and washes us clean with his blood.  Our wrongdoing is buried along with Christ’s sacrificial death and we are free.

“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 ESV

And in our acknowledgement we experience and really come to know that God is for us.

The Psalmist put it this way,  “But You, O LORD, are a shield about me, My glory, and the One who lifts my head.”  Psalms 3:3 NIV

God surrounds us and lifts us up.  We come broken on our knees before him, and we find ourselves standing beside the Lord.

Repentance is the key to this sort of freedom.  Repentance enables us to receive God’s grace.

Nothing else can do this.  Without repentance we are simply stuck in our sin.

But with repentance we find life.

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor;  he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;” 

Isaiah 61:1 ESV

With repentance we are rich in heart and mind.  We find ourselves, as this verse declares the Living Christ, with our broken hearts bound up, our captivity to sin is turned into liberty of life, and the prisons and bondage of guilt are opened and freed off of us.

As we accept and agree with the sacrifice of Christ the forgiveness established on the cross over 2000 years ago becomes our own.  Repentance is our hearts position to receive all the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Without repentance we are merely in contempt of the cross, and against the work of the Lord. But with repentance we find the habitation of God in our very lives and we receive his gladness throughout our whole life.

“For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:  “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.”  Isaiah 57:15 ESV 


”God I come before you today in the name and the blood of my Lord Jesus Christ, bringing my sins (they are…. ) to the foot of your cross.  These sins, my guilt, and my shame have weighed us down and crippled our hearts and minds. 

We are tired of our sin and wrongdoing, and today we say,  “No more” in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ.  Today I declare enough is enough and I release my sins unto you God.   We enter into a contrite heart and we ask for a deep repentance before you. 

Leaving our sins at the foot of your cross, declaring them covered by the blood of the Lamb, they are washed away and cancelled by the power of our Living Lord Jesus Christ. I take unto myself your salvation to every part of my being.  We receive your grace and give praise, declaring all glory to you God.  Amen” 


We cannot know our sin without the revelation of the Holy Spirit.  While repentance may feel bad to us we come to find that it is a gift from God.  In this, our response turns from one of avoiding our sin and our need of repentance to coming before God eager to know how we might be free. 

Repentance, after all, is the path of healing and freedom for all of us.  In Psalm we read,  “The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit.  You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.” Psalm 51:17 NLT

We can therefore take courage to come before the Lord with a broken and repentant heart.  As leaders we want to lead the way in this.  The people we serve need to know that it is always okay to bring our sins out into the open before the Lord.  As leaders we set the tone. 

Part of making repentance normal amongst us, is creating a culture of safety in our churches.  We must normalize our growth processes and in this we must normalize the fact that we are sinners before a holy God, that God has covered over our sin, and that we are invited to enter into his covering.  There is no shame in this — only cause for celebration. 

This means, that we remove shame and condemnation as part of our ministry to each other.  Shame and condemnation are of the enemy, not the Lord.  Shame and condemnation keep us from bringing our sin to God — and this keeps us bound.  God’s heart is for the exact opposite. 

God’s heart wants us free to bring our sin, failures and regrets to him.  This is, in many ways, the ministry of the body of Christ on this earth.  We are to participate and lead people to the grace of God.  We do this as we create emotional safety for each other as we refuse to condemn, blame, or bring shame. 

1.  Begin to listen to your language and the words, and the unspoken messages beneath your words, and see how much shame and condemnation is in your church. 

2.  Repent and allow your heart to be broken over the amount of shame and condemnation that is in your fellowship of believers — it should not be there. 

3.  Ask the Lord to show you a new way.  Invite the grace of the Lord to penetrate your own heart and mind first, and then to penetrate the culture of your church body.  We must be changed by the grace of God or all we have is religion, and religion kills; we want the life of Christ. 

As a church leadership team and as a body of believers it is important to come together and into agreement with the grace of the Lord, and to break our agreements with the enemy’s shame and condemnations. 

We do this as we gather together and as we talk about shame and how damaging it is to our hearts in the Lord.  When we are bound up in shame we cannot see the love of God.  And where we are bound up in condemnations we are unable to know the love of God. 

We desperately need freedom from shame and condemnation and into the love of Jesus Christ.  We must cry out to God for this freedom for only the work of Jesus is powerful enough to reach into our deepest hearts with a touch that heals us and restores us and makes us glad. 

I suggest that as a family, as a leadership team, and even as a congregation that you confess to your agreements to shame and condemnation (remember, these are agreements with satan), and make a new agreement with the Lord for mutual blessing and honouring of each other. 

We are called to be healing agents of Jesus in this world.  To do this we must renounce shame and condemnation and we must take on the grace of our Lord.  In this we become safe people and safe churches so that repentance comes naturally and easily to us, and in this repentance we are transformed into the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 


“We come before you God in the name and the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.  We confess that we have been under the shame and condemnation of the enemy.  We have even been participants of shame and condemnation, even bringing these things to those around us.  We are sorry. 

Today, in the name and the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ we renounce shame and condemnation.  We refuse to use them any longer to control or manipulate each other.  We realize that shame and condemnation are of the enemy and not God. 

Please alert our spirits to these things of the enemy.  Help our ears and our understanding to hear when we are speaking shame or condemnation, help our hearts to know when we are carrying shame or condemnation deep inside ourselves.  Heal us, help us, restore us. 

Today we make new agreements unto the grace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ.  We recognize that the grace of Jesus is powerful to make us new creatures and to free us unto all holiness and godliness.  We receive your grace today God.  Thank you for making us new.” 

Summary – repentance

Repentance is key to our healing and freedom.   Joel 2:12-13, Psalm 57:17

Hiding our sin never bears good fruit.   Psalm 32:3-5, Proverbs 28:13

God is understanding.   Isaiah 1:18, Exodus 34:6

We can come to Him with everything.   James 4:6, Psalm 34:18



9. Adam was really blaming God for giving him the woman

Why Do We Confess?

A Pastor who is using our CCIM College Material has relayed a question about James 5:16a which says, “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” NLT.

What does it mean to confess? “Do we confess our sins before God or our fellow people whom we have offended?”

Below is my answer to his questions:

  • NOTE: This refers to James 5:16a as noted in CCIM College Course, Module One, Month One, Chapter 6 – FREEDOM, page 31

Capturing God’s Heart – The Time of Christ – Volume 47

When Jesus Christ came to earth there was a well-established religious system. There were the scribes and pharisees, these were the keepers of the law, the ones schooled in the specifics of the keeping of the law.

These were the leaders of the Jewish religion and the ones that enforced and taught God’s ways. They were the ones living their best to be good and right and perfect and by this managed to appear better than anyone else.

At that same time, when Jesus came to earth, there were the common people like you and I. These common people were living their lives trying to do as God might have them do, trying to be as God might have them be. They were working hard but perhaps, in contrast to the religious leaders, felt inadequate and not quite measuring up.

Continue reading

Sweet Relief

We don’t always know what to do with our sin. How do we come transparent to the cross? When indiscretions pile up what do we do with them? In what way might we be loosed off our burdens?

The answers to these questions, the manner by which we find freedom in Christ, is much of the work that we do at Capturing Courage. While we don’t talk about it much, our core is always about authentic relationship with God.

I’ll never forget the pastor in Africa whose heart cried out for repentance. I had met with him the night before and had shared that the Holy Spirit had been reminding me of the importance of repentance and that I intended to bring this to his congregation the next day.

The day had arrived. What I hadn’t expected was that his congregation was all children. So I changed my plans a touch and first shared the story of Moses, speaking to the children how they would one day be leaders in their country and that God’s call comes to the very young also. Our afternoon was then spent in praying over each other, imparting the Lord’s blessings on all that were there.

The close of the day was near and to my side this man came with his notes in hand, and pointing to where he had written ‘repentance’ he implored me, “When are we going to do this?” His deep hunger for repentance and a way out of the guilt and sin and burdens he was carrying touched me deeply.

I’ll never forget that moment. For in his urgency and plea is the cry of all of us. We all need a way through our own deserts. We all require relief from the sacks of coal we have been walking under.

It is not a nice part of the job, bringing people to a knowledge of sin. There is always a knife-thrust in the gut when we recognize the depths of our own stuff, but oh what sweet relief as we heave off our loads at the foot of the cross.

The moments from guilt to freedom takes all of about 30 seconds. It is the honesty and authenticity that takes so long to come to.

Bottom line, invest in honesty before God today. Bring your stuff. Leave off your loads.

Confess (God I did this…)

Repent (I am so sorry…)

Renounce (In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ I say ‘No More!’)

Break (With the strong arm of my Lord Jesus Christ I reach back into my past and I uproot this sin from where it first began to grow. No more today!)

Cancel (In the name of my Lord Jesus Christ I cancel all authority, curses and assignments against me because of this sin. No more today!)

Claim (And by the power of my living Lord Jesus Christ I receive from the good hands of God ________. Thank-you)

Seal (In the name of my Lord Jesus Christ I seal this work today in the love of the Father, the blood of the Son, and the breathe of the Holy Spirit. I give all honor and glory 100% to God today and declare myself covered and kept in the name and the blood of my living Lord Jesus Christ.)

Find your own sweet relief in the cross of Christ today. You won’t ever be the same.

Capturing God’s Heart – Repentance – Volume 28

There is a time for celebration and rejoicing and for worshiping God, and then there is a time for mourning and grieving and laying bare our deeds before the Lord.

Consider what James says,

“Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” James 4:8-10

Admitting that we have done wrong is one of the most freeing experiences. Repentance is deep intimacy with The Father.

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