Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "The Little Brown Church In The Vale"1 (Lyrics)
A week or so ago, I went to the bank on my way to work to take out some cash using the automatic teller. I wanted to take out $280. I'd done so on numerous occasions before, so I wasn't paying a lot of attention to what I was doing. This time, however, as I pressed the "Enter" button, I noticed that I'd put in an extra zero. Instead of $280, the screen read $2,800 just before it disappeared. I must have held my finger on the button too long.
"Wait", I thought. "I don't want that much cash!" But the machine had already started to process my request. I could hear it working behind the screen: Chug-a, chug-a. Chug-a, chug-a. I pressed the "Cancel" button but to no avail. Chug-a, chug-a.
I pressed the "Clear" button. Nothing. Chug-a, chug-a.
"Now, what?" I wondered, slightly panicked. "I'm going to go into my line of credit. I don't want to go into my line of credit!" Chug-a, chug-a.
"Maybe the machine will reject my request," I hoped. Chug-a, chug-a. Chug-a, chug-a.
It took the machine a few minutes to count out that much cash. As I waited to see what would happen, it kept working away. Chug-a, chug-a. Chug-a, chug-a. Finally, it spewed out the money. I looked around to see if anyone was watching me with that much cash. Nobody was, so I stuffed it in my pocket and left. I got in my car, and with nobody around, I counted it. It was correct. Whew! So, I continued on to work.
Later, at lunch, as my wife and I were laughing over my mistake, we started comparing it to sin. (We do that kind of thing.) Just like what happened after the button was pushed on the machine, once the sin is committed, we have to live with the consequences. The machine was unforgiving and just kept on doing what I'd told it to do. However, unlike the machine, once we make a mistake and sin, we have a Saviour in Jesus who forgives us if we confess our sin and repent of it.
1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (NKJV)
Of course, it's better not to make a mistake and sin in the first place, just as it's better not to make a mistake on the bank machine. But, having made Him the Lord of your life, if you do sin — and we all do — aren't you glad that you believe in the One who offers forgiveness? I know that I am!
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son to pay for our mistakes and transgressions. Thank You, Jesus, for forgiveness. We'd be lost without You. In Your holy name, we pray. Amen.