Member’s Report: A Mixed Bag

Member’s Report: A Mixed Bag
Vol: 64 Issue: 23 Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Today’s is one of those ‘mixed-bag’ reports; a few observations, and an overview of what is going on behind the scenes at your Omega Letter.

First, allow me to weigh in on a question posted in our member’s forums — although the members have done a magnificent job answering the question directly in the forum thread. The question involves sin and forgiveness;

“I have been raised that yes God does forgive us of our sins if we ask for forgiveness, but that if we continue to sin the same sin knowing that what we are doing is a sin, that He will at some point stop. My oldest daughter tells me that her minister is telling her that no He does forgive always.”

One runs into a problem the moment we attempt to anthropomorphize — or assign human attributes — to God. God cleared that up way back in the Book of Numbers.

“God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: hath He said, and shall he not do it? or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good?” (Numbers 23:19)

The question revolves around whether, at some point, God’s capacity for forgiveness can be exhausted.

That would be a human attribute, not a Divine one. It is the sort of thing a man would do, based on the human concept of fairness.

I’ve always loved the Apostle Peter. I believe the Lord selected him because Peter is the ultimate human being.

It was Peter who leapt to the Lord’s defense by cutting off the ear of Caiaphas’ servant.

It was Peter that grew faint when he attempted to step out onto the surface of the Sea of Gallilee to meet the Lord.

It was Peter who promised most profusely to stand with the Lord, and it was Peter who failed the most spectacularly, denying the Lord not once, but three times.

And it was Peter who questioned Jesus about the Lord’s capacity for forgiveness.

“Then came Peter to Him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?”

That is typical human thinking. How many times does somebody have to do you wrong before you just can’t forgive them anymore?

Jesus, however, answered the question from the Lord’s perspective. “Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.” (Matthew 18:21-22)

Obviously, Jesus was not referring to keeping track until someone commits 490 sins — we’d lose count long before that. We would also lose count long before we committed 490 sins against God.

God says He doesn’t keep track of how often we sin, either.

“This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.” (Hebrews 10:16-17)

When it comes to man’s relationship with God, the Bible makes a point of ensuring we have all the details.

We know the wages of sin is death. We know that eternal life is the unmerited gift from God. (Romans 6:23) We know that all men are sinners, Romans (3:23) and that all our works of righteousness are, from the Lord’s perspective, “like filthy rags.” (Isaiah 64:6)

In a man’s eyes, there is a point at which a person cannot be forgiven. We even have a word to describe such a person — “incorrigible.”

We expect God to think like we do. But the Bible tells us that God’s forgiveness is perfect, because the penalty exacted as payment for our sins is perfect.

Writes the Apostle Paul; “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” (Galatians 2:21)

Let’s briefly dissect that verse. Paul speaks of ‘frustrating’ the grace of God. The dictionary defines ‘frustrate’ as follows: “thwart: hinder or prevent (the efforts, plans, or desires)”

Paul is saying that God’s grace is thwarted or hindered by the human concept of forgiveness. In addition, notes Paul, if righteousness is obtained by keeping the law, then Christ died for nothing. Do you see another way to understand this verse?

Human logic would indicate that if a person continues in sin, at some point, that sin will accumulate to the degree that one can sin oneself out of God’s grace.

The operative phrase here is “at some point.” At WHICH point? Which sin is the one at which God draws the line? At what point does sin accumulate to the point where God withdraws His forgiveness? The 490th sin?

Now, is it the 490th time you repeat the same sin? Or is one allowed 490 different sins over the rest of one’s lifetime before hitting the cut-off point?

Can anybody tell me the answer? No? Then how can anybody be certain they are still saved? Are you writing them down as you commit them and trying to stay under the 490 mark?

Do you have some other benchmark sin for which there is no forgiveness available? Does God? Well, actually, yes, He does.

“Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.” (Matthew 12:31)

The term ‘blasphemy’ means “defiant irreverence.” Continual rejection of the Holy Spirit s promptings to trust in Jesus Christ is the unpardonable blasphemy. Remember what is taught in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

The only condition when someone would have no forgiveness is if that someone is not among the “whoever believes in Him.” So blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is a rejection of the Gospel in favor of standing before the Judge clothed in our own righteousness.

Pulling it altogether, we learn that there is but one sin that will send you to hell. Rejecting the offer of salvation.

One is either eternally saved, or one has never been saved. The Bible makes no allowance for some middle status.

God is not a man. He is Perfect Love. Man cannot experience perfect love in this lifetime, so man has no benchmark against which to relate to it. The best we can experience is imperfect love, so we tend to define God’s love against our understanding of it.

Salvation by grace through faith “bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: He maketh the devices of the people of none effect.” (Psalms 33:10)

Recreating God’s grace to fit man’s viewpoint is the counsel of the heathen, not the counsel of God.

Member’s Update

The next few weeks will be busy ones for us. On Thursday, I will be flying to Dallas to record an interview with Sandra Levitt to air on “Zola Levitt Presents.”

I am not sure when it will air, or whether or not they will simply air snippets of the interview in various programs or the entire interview. I suppose the best way to be sure to catch the interview is to watch the Zola Levitt program every week. (I’ll let you know more about it after its in the can.)

On Friday, I am scheduled to appear on DayStar’s flagship program, “Celebration” with Steve Spillman and John Brown of Zion Oil to discuss the probability of a massive oil strike in Israel and its potential ramifications.

Again, I don’t know when this program will air, either, but I will try and find out when I am there and let you know. And in any case, we’ll try and capture it when it does air and stream it via the website.

During the first week in February, I will be heading down to True Potential Publishing in South Carolina to go over the final manuscript for my upcoming book, which is scheduled for printing April 1st. Not sure how long I’ll be down there — I guess I’ll be there for as long as it takes.

In the third week in February, we’ll be heading down to Orlando for the three-day National Religious Broadcasters Convention as guests of True Potential Publishing.

We are setting aside late March-early April to spend preparing for another season on the road, getting our ducks in a row, all our doctor’s appointments out of the way, etc.

In May, Road Tour 2007 will kick off with an OL Member’s gathering in Houston. Nicole Boedeker is cooridinating the tour. For more information, write Nic at roadtour@omegaletter.com

And, sometime in the next week or so, we hope to have our newly redesigned Omega Letter website online. Mike’s been working round-the-clock getting it ready. I’ve seen it — you are gonna love it. I can hardly wait.

So, that’s what we’ve got planned for 07, should the Lord tarry. It promises to be an exciting year for the Omega Letter membership. Please pray for me on Thursday and Friday that the Lord will use me according to His purpose and that He gives me the words to be an effective messenger of the King.

And please pray for our shared mission as we continue in our service to Him together.

Until He comes. Maranatha!

This entry was posted in Briefings by Pete Garcia. Bookmark the permalink.

About Pete Garcia

Christian, father, husband, veteran, pilot, and sinner saved by grace. I am a firm believer in, and follower of Jesus Christ. I am Pre-Trib, Dispensational, and Non-Denominational (but I lean Southern Baptist).

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