Q: How big does a sin have to be before God won’t forgive it? I’m afraid I’ve probably crossed the line (wherever it is), because I’ve done some terrible things and have hurt a lot of people. — N.G.
A: There is only one sin that God cannot forgive, and that is the sin of refusing his forgiveness! No matter who we are or what we’ve done, God still loves us, and he promises to forgive us, totally and completely, if we will only turn to him in repentance and faith.
Is this hard for us to accept? Yes, it is, because it’s not the way we usually treat one another. If someone hurts us in some small way or fails to be friendly to us (for example), we might resent it, but over time we’ll probably overlook it or forgive them. But if someone deeply hurts us or cheats us or lies about us, then we have a much harder time forgetting about it or forgiving them. The greater the hurt, the harder it is for us to forgive.
But God isn’t this way! Yes, we have offended him by our sins — in fact, we’ve hurt him far more deeply than we’ll ever hurt anyone else. And yet God still loves us, and he yearns for us to realize what we’ve done, and turn to him in repentance and faith. God takes our forgiveness so seriously that he sent his Son into the world to die for our sins.
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Don’t carry your burden of sin any longer. Turn instead to Jesus Christ, and in faith give your burden to him. God’s promise is for you: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
Write to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201 or visit www.billygraham.org.