God forgets sin when. . .
Scripture reading for May 22nd: Job 11-14
“Know this, God has even forgotten some of your sin.” Job 11:6b
“Their sins and lawless acts I will Remember no more.” Hebrews 10:17
“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sin, God is faithful and just and will forgive us our sin and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1st John 1:8-9
Job’s friend Zophar was frank in his accusation that Job needed to repent. He was certain that Job had sinned and that God was being merciful even in this harsh trial. He stated that God had probably forgotten some of Job’s sins or it might be worse! (Job 11:6) If Job would put away his sin, God would be merciful to him. (Job 11:14-15) Zophar could not get away from the common understanding of God’s justice and that trouble and suffering were a result of sin in a person’s life.
Job, however, knew of no sin and did not want to fake a repentance or manufacture some sin just to try and manipulate God or appease these friends. Job did know his need for God’s covering of his sins. He knew that God alone could cover these sins. He wrestled with how he could meet with God or if the grave would hold him at death. Finally, Job made a statement of faith concerning his own life and sins. It is in the form of a prayer discourse with God. (Job 14:13-17) Job asks God to hide him in the grave until his anger has passed and then “to set a time and remember me”. He asks that if a man dies, will he live again? He expects to hear a call from God and to respond from the grave because God will long to have fellowship with the “creature He has made”. At this time, God will not keep track of sin. Job expected all his sins to be sealed in a bag, covered over and not remembered!
In this passage, we have the beginnings of the doctrine of atonement for sins. Job longs for an audience with God and a mediator who can speak for him. He doesn’t know what his sin is, but knows that he has sin. He asks for eternal life with God forgiving and forgetting his sins. He expects God to call and he will answer him at a time in the future when God’s wrath has passed! What a Savior we have! We have a mediator who is like us, but without sin! Jesus Christ came and gave His life for our lives, promising to come again and remember us! He forgives our sins and remembers them no more! We will live with Him forever! This is available now to all who will repent and confess their sins to the Lord! (1st John 1:7-9)