God’s mercy…How far does it extend? Do we pay only lip service to God’s mercy, which extends just far enough to reach ourselves, but won’t go any farther to others?
In Ephesians 1:7, the apostle Paul stated; “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.”
When Paul used this word in Ephesians 1:7 to describe the forgiveness of sins, he was teaching God has permanently dismissed our past sins from us, becoming liberated, separated from them, He discharged them from us, He has sent them away, and He has released us from them. Our debt accorded to us, due to past transgressions, are canceled freeing us from the guilt incurred because of those sins. Because the blood of Jesus paid for our sin, God forfeited His right to hold us captive for that which we have already received forgiveness.
The word “forgive” in Ephesians 1:7 is the Greek word aphiemi, which means to dismiss permanently, to liberate completely, to discharge, to send away, or to release. It was used in New Testament times to mean to cancel a debt or to release someone from an obligation of a contract, a commitment, or a promise. It means to forfeit any right to hold a person captive to a previous commitment or a wrong he has committed.
Let me repeat the opening statement, “God’s mercy…How far does it extend? Do we pay only lip service to God’s mercy, extending it just far enough to reach ourselves but won’t go any farther to others?”
What we’re told in Psalm 103:12? It says, “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” is how we are to view God’s forgiveness not only for ourselves but for others.
If God said He removed our sins from us as far as the north is from the south, we never meet our sins again, because east never meets west, and west never meets east then we are to exercise the same forgiveness towards our fellow man.
Micah 7:19 (NLT) “Once again you will have compassion on us. You will trample our sins under your feet and throw them into the depths of the ocean!
God has put your sins behind Him forever, never seeing them again. He has chosen to release you from those sins completely — so we should do for others.