Key Verse: “Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.’” Acts 2:38
Some people say that if God doesn’t judge America, then He will have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah. Remember though, God would not have destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah if just five righteous people had been there. He is always ready to forgive those who repent, just as He forgave the wicked city of Nineveh. Even today, God’s forgiveness is unchanged. Repentance and forgiveness still go hand-in-hand.
People often don’t repent for one of two reasons. First, they think their sins are too bad for God to forgive. Or, they think they are good and not in need of God’s forgiveness. From a human perspective, we judge what’s sinful on a sliding scale. What our culture calls “progressive thinking” and “tolerance,” God still calls, “sin”, just as He did with Sodom and Gomorrah. But God is merciful and His forgiveness is unchanged.
The forgiveness of Christ is not based on the depth of our sin, but on the price He paid for our sin. Listen to what the Apostle Paul says, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11.)
Did you catch that? The church in Corinth was full of people with dark pasts. The same blood that washed their sin away, washes our sin away. The same God who forgave them will forgive you. Even what we consider the smallest of sins required His sacrifice on the Cross. His forgiveness is available for everyone who repents of their sin and believes on the name of Jesus Christ. It doesn’t matter how large or small the sin seems in our eyes.
There is only one thing that God does not forgive, and that’s the utter rejection of His free and gracious offer to pay the price for your sin. The unpardonable sin rejects the conviction of the Holy Spirit, whereas repentance brings forgiveness and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Where do you stand with God today? You’re neither too bad nor too good to receive the unchanging forgiveness of Jesus Christ.