When we lived in Kentucky many years ago, my children had the most wonderful elementary school principal. She was there every single morning greeting the children as they walked into the school doors. It was so obvious that she loved those children. I’ll never forget the day when I received the news that she would not be coming back for a while because her 24-year-old son had been killed. He had stopped on the side of the road one night at around midnight to help a couple change a flat tire. A drug driver hit him as he was helping the couple and killed him. How can a mother ever forgive someone who killed her son for a reason so unavoidable?
In Jeremiah 31:31-35, the Lord sounds so frustrated and just wanting to wipe the slate clean. The Lord says, “I made a covenant with the people when I took them by the hand and led them out of Egypt. They broke that covenant, though I loved them as a husband loves his wife.” Over-and-over again, the Lord reaches out to the Israelites to encourage them to turn away from their sinful ways and come back to Him. He sent Jeremiah to try and knock some sense into them but, they continually fall back into their old selves.
And so, the Lord says: I’m starting over – I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel. They will know me because it will be written on their hearts. But, here is my favorite part:
“I will be their God and they will be my people…And, I will forgive their wickedness, and I will never again remember their sins.” (vv. 33-34)
God does the impossible – God forgives us even when we have done the most horrible things that we could possibly imagine – God forgets! God doesn’t hold it against us and dangle it over our heads. It’s done. Forgiven and Forgotten!
Even if this mother could forgive the one who killed her son, I doubt she will ever be able to forget. But yet, that is exactly what God did – Forgave and forgets the sin of the crucifixion of His beloved Son – and God does it for each of us too.
Let us pray, Gracious God, only you can do the impossible. You not only forgive our sins, but also, forget it ever happened. Your love is unfathomable. We love you so much. Amen.