Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. Isaiah 1:18
The Basic Bible Truth
Sin is a huge issue to God. We often fail to recognize and remember that God has attached the death penalty to sin—He feels that strongly about it. He doesn’t rank sins like we tend to some times. Theft is no worse than a white lie. They are both sin and therefore completely heinous to God. Thankfully God is a forgiving God, ready and capable to forgive all of our sin, if only we will ask.
Small Bottle Of Iodine Small Bottle Of Bleach Large Clear Container Of Warm Water
Practice this one at home before bringing it to the public. Learn how much iodine you can apply to the water and still counteract it with bleach, and the opposite as well. It’s a great, simple visual to accent your talk on forgiveness. If you do it right, you should be able to make the water dark (sinful) and then clear (forgiven), and back to dark, back to clear several times over in one session. You will find that using warm water will speed up the chemical reaction.
Isaiah begins his book with a Word from God to Israel, His people. He talks to them about their sinfulness and how serious things had gotten. In Chapter 1:5-6, he paints for them an allegorical scene. He talks of an individual with a serious medical issue. Imagine a person with open, oozing sores covering their entire body, from the top of the head to the sole of the foot. Add to that the fact that the individual is not actively seeking any medical attention. Anyone looking at a situation like this in real life would come to an ugly conclusion. If nothing changes, the victim will die a slow, painful, hideous death. God says that the wages, the result of unchecked sin, is death. An excruciatingly painful death—in Hell. All sin leads to destruction. It is the Christian’s ever present enemy. We must be watching for it and its effects on our lives and deal with it accordingly.
In verse 18 the tenor of the conversation changes as God pleads with them to consider their condition. He mentions that sin is a scarlet color. An interesting thought. Blood is also scarlet. And that He can change their scarlet condition back to white—pure and clean. We are told in I John 1:9 that all we must do is confess and He will forgive.
When we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, the death penalty is taken off of the table for us. God has said that Jesus paid that penalty for us, but our issues with sin and our sin nature continue through our lives. We are to strive to learn to live without sinning, and we know that when we do slip up, we need only to ask for forgiveness. But we cannot dabble in sin and then conveniently ask God to forgive. The Christian life is not to be considered that way. God warned Cain before he killed Abel that sin was a formidable enemy and that Cain needed to learn to master it or it would destroy. That message still holds true today. We dare not allow sin a foothold in our lives anymore than we might store arsenic in our spice cabinet in the kitchen at home. What a foolish thought.
Sin can take many forms. The first things that come to mind are the sinful acts that we commit. There are those things that we do that are wrong. For example, we might lie about something, or get angry inappropriately. But there are also sins of omission. Those are more difficult to see. Things that we do not do, but should. I have to ask myself how often have I wasted an opportunity to share the Gospel? Or is my walk with God as healthy and complete as it could be? The answer is that there is always room for improvement. And if there is room for improvement, I am not perfect and I have sin in my life.
God has promised to forgive. That does not give me the option to go ahead and do anything I like, knowing that all I have to do is come to Him and ask for forgiveness. He will forgive, regardless. God is that forgiving, but we will find ourselves miserable living our life in that fashion. Dabbling in sin in that way causes us to become comfortable with the sin, and that almost always leads to bigger, more dangerous things. Pornography is a huge, often ignored, problem in our society today. The access to inappropriate photos and videos is unprecedented with the advent of the internet. And Satan has taken every opportunity to bring it into our line of sight. Studies have shown that there is very little difference between the actions of the world and those who profess to be Christians in this area. We must guard our hearts. Always.
As the water turns back to clear each time, may I remind you that when God forgives, He forgets. He completely erases that sin from our record. The consequences may still be there, but as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. That is a striking statement. I find myself admitting that I cannot forgive that completely. I remember those who wrong me, and what they may have done. God erases our indiscretions completely from the pages of his records when He forgives.
As I am discussing sin and forgiveness, I add the appropriate chemical to the water—iodine to represent sin and bleach to represent forgiveness. The chemical changes are quite striking.