As Far as the East is from the West

“As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us”. Psalm 103:12.

I can’t always remember the exact date something happens, but I can remember anniversaries. When the Lord decides to bless me with a wife, I hope she enjoys them, because I plan on celebrating the major ones in our relationship.

Unfortunately, the bad ones sometimes make as big of an impression as the good ones.

Yesterday was just such an occasion. It had the dubious distinction of being the anniversary of something wrong I did over twenty years ago. And while time has served to soften details, the point of what I did remains.

Don’t get the wrong idea. I don’t wake up every morning bemoaning my past sins. I admit it took some time after the fact to fully comprehend the extent of my transgression, but I didn’t waste any time before confessing, repenting, and asking God to forgive me. And over time, He helped me work through the realization and guilt of what I had done.

The problem was, while scripture tells us that God will forgive our sin if we only repent and ask for His forgiveness, for the longest time I was the one that couldn’t forgive me. Each time I looked at what I’d done, the enormity of it seemed to grow, and I couldn’t comprehend how God could forgive and forget what I’d done. And if He couldn’t, how could I?

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6.

That’s where I was making my mistake. I didn’t want to fully relinquish my control and trust Him completely. And I was insulting Him by not accepting all of His grace.

You see, when Jesus died on the cross, He paid for all sin. ALL of it. Every sin that has ever been committed and every sin that will ever be committed. And when we accept His gift of salvation by faith and allow Him to apply that payment to our accounts, He wipes our slates clean.

That doesn’t mean we won’t ever sin again, but it re-establishes our relationship with Him so that, when we do sin after that, all we have to do is what 1 John 1:9, tells us; confess our sins and He will be faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us of all unrighteousness.

Both of those actions require faith, the initial request for Christ to save us, and the ongoing requests for cleansing of daily sin. Yet for some reason we have a problem with the second one.

It’s not like we’re doing something He doesn’t know about. As I mentioned earlier, He’s already seen all of our sin, from beginning to end, and has paid for it. All we’re doing is acknowledging what we’ve done by confessing and repenting, and thanking Him for taking care of it. Our first step of faith restored our relationship. The rest of them continually restore our fellowship.

I finally came to the realization that I had to step out on faith and trust that what He said about my sins was the truth. That He truly does forgive me of them and that He separates them from me as far as the east is from the west. Or as Micah 7:19, and Jeremiah 31:34, says, He will cast my sins into the depths of the sea, and He will remember them no more. And since He no longer remembered what I’d done, I had to let it go too. So I did.

I’m sure the memory of the date will pop up from time to time. The enemy likes to remind us of where we’ve failed. But I don’t have to dwell on it. And I can use it as an opportunity to thank God again for His great mercy and grace.

And who knows. Maybe one day God will redeem the date, and I’ll have a new anniversary worth remembering.

Do you know Jesus? Do you have a personal relationship with Him? According to scripture, all anyone must do is recognize their sin condition, realize that Christ died to pay for that sin, and ask Him to save them from it. Salvation is a gift of grace we receive by faith. Meet Him today! Contact me at if you need more information.

Thanks for stopping by! Please feel free to comment and let me know what you think!

3 thoughts on “As Far as the East is from the West

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