Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you. I’ve called your name. You’re mine. –God, Isaiah 43:1
There are people who are dying inside because of the mistakes they’ve made. They know what they’ve done and when they can’t find a way to take back the pain they caused. They are being crushed by an onslaught of terror. The kind of terror that drowns out their eternal hope.
It’s our responsibility to remind them of grace. They’re forgetting. They’re losing it.
They’re hearing voices that tell them that they can’t come back from this. They’re being told that they are forever stained.
Find them. Search them out and ignore their dirt. Separate the person from the sin. Treat the person one way and treat the sin another.
The pit of hell is rising against them. The forever blackness and eternal nothing is closing in on them.
When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you. When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down. –Isaiah 43:2
The church, generally speaking, is terrible at grace. They kick their battle wounded out and they end up scattered in a spiritual desert. Homeless, hungry, thirsty and naked. People think they’re doing the right thing when they separate themselves from the sinner.
The one who failed doesn’t just disappear. Their heart is still beating. When you have nothing to do with the person who made a mistake, you’re doing it in the name of God. This sends them into isolation with demonic forces being the only thing interested in their spirit. Their spirit which is very much alive and can feel everything.
God says that He is with them. So, the question you must ask yourself is: Are you with God?
I’d sell off the whole world to get you back, trade the creation just for you. -God, Isaiah 43:4
God is busy with the ransoming and the rescuing. He’s already taken care of the punishment. He’s already done away with their sin. It’s His baby out there. His lamb got lost and He’ll sell off everything He owns to get them back. He’ll leave you behind to go after them. Where are you?
‘Send them back. Return my sons from distant lands, my daughters from faraway places. I want them back, every last one who bears my name, every man, woman, and child whom I created for my glory, yes, personally formed and made each one.’ –God, Isaiah 43:6-7
This is your calling. This is your message. Grace. Mercy. Restoration. Go and get them. Give them a safe place to sleep. Feed them. Give them something to drink. Clothe them. Nurse them back to health.
But what about their sin? What about all the people who are pained just to be reminded of them?
“Forget about what’s happened; don’t keep going over old history.” -God, Isaiah 43:18
In God, everything is brand new. Can you treat your old friend according to the new? I know it’s hard to forget the indecency and selfishness. You’re human. But can you see what you’re doing? You’re separating yourself from the very thing you’re trying to uphold. You’re counteracting God’s grace with God’s old law.
But I, yes I, am the one who takes care of your sins—that’s what I do. I don’t keep a list of your sins. -God, Isaiah 43:25
When you base your actions, opinions and words on their sin, you’re not basing them on what Jesus accomplished. You’re letting sin tell you what to do. You’re justified by their sin.
‘I will remember their sin no more.‘ -God, Jeremiah 31:34 ESV
Can you even call it justified when God has no idea what sin you’re talking about?
Instead of building a fortress from bricks of gracelessness and the mortar of self-preservation, designs that keep God out, here’s what you should do:
Go after those who take the wrong way. Be tender with sinners, but not soft on sin. -Jude 1:22