I started learning theology when I was three. You may think that you didn’t, but you probably did too. Even if your caretakers weren’t religious, you likely began intaking some sort of information about whether or not there was a God and what the people around you believed about Him. Maybe they were furious with Him and thought He was an evil jackass. Maybe they worshipped Him with as much of their hearts as they knew how. Maybe they never spoke of Him at all and your theology existed in a world devoid of acknowledging Him. Whatever the case, quite early in life we began to develop beliefs and opinions about who God was, whether He existed and whether He mattered to us.
When I reached the ripe old age of five, I began to learn systematic theology. I began a journey of memorizing hundreds of catechism questions. Not one of which I could actually tell you the answer to today. They must have had some impact on me. In spite of my inability to recall a question or answer, undoubtedly those formative years scarred me in ways I may only learn about in eternity. (Okay, I am lying. I bet the first question was, “Who was the first man?” and the first answer was, “Adam”. haha, but how could I know for sure?)
Eventually I would nearly switch religions when I gave my life to Christ at the ripe old age of twenty. Then I had to begin unlearning the many things I had learned in my childhood years – not in the catechism questions themselves but in everything else that I had been taught in my environment about God, who He was and whether I mattered to Him.
When I became a believer in Jesus Christ and placed all my hope for life in Him, I learned the theological truth that the blood of Jesus is powerful. I learned it cleanses those who believe in Him from all sin. The culture I became a part of talked about the importance of the blood of Jesus a lot, but I don’t think I really understood. It was a very, very tiny bit like those catechism questions I learned as a child. Though the words on the page were true, they weren’t translating very well into my brain’s interpretation of my environment.
The last couple months, and particularly the last couple weeks, I have been actually learning about the power of the blood of Jesus. I know I have experienced its power for the last twelve years. Nothing short of Jesus’ blood could have gotten me through them, but I have been learning about its power in a different way.
I have begun learning that it is the only answer to my pain. It is the only basis for true forgiveness and reconciliation to take place. Accepting the blood of Jesus as payment for the sin that has been committed against me is the only answer to my pain. Now don’t get me wrong, I fully believe the Scriptures that say we must confess and repent to experience healing, but those things also require the foundation of the blood of Jesus. His sacrifice.
At some point, you have heard me confess on this blog that I struggle greatly with forgiving other believers. I don’t understand why they would treat me as they have or why they may not confess or repent or change. I suppose changing and repenting are technically synonymous. I have grumbled that it is not fair since they will never have to pay for their sin against me. They get out of jail free, so to speak.
But I have been learning the pathway to forgiveness lies in accepting the blood of Jesus Christ as payment for their sin. These last few weeks in particular when my heart and soul cry out for a payment for the sin against me to be made and I begin to sink in anger against those who have hurt me and so begin to accuse them in my mind to myself or before the throne of God, I consciously choose to accept the blood of my Lord as payment for their sin. And in the words of Ron White, in a completely different context and about an entirely different subject, “that’ll shut her up.”
And it has. Every time.
I am a somewhat visual person, and in this conversation I see the blood of Jesus literally being handed to me on a platter. In my imagination, God asks me, “Is this enough? Will this take care of it?” And I become speechless with amazement and reply, “It is more than plenty. It is more than I ever dreamed possible. It is far more than I deserve or ever could require.”
The blood of the Lord Jesus Christ cleanses me from all sin.
Has it cleansed you?