I enjoy fishing. In fact, my three boys and I recently returned from a camping trip on which we caught a handful of trout up in the general area of Mt. Rainier, WA. So this illustration Jerry Bridges referred to in his book The Gospel for Real Life caught my attention.
The verse Bridges is talking about in the following quote is Micah 7:19: [You will] hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea (NIV).
“Notice the forceful verb, ‘hurl,’ that Micah uses. The picture is of God vigorously disposing of our sins by hurling them overboard. He doesn’t just drop them over the side or even pitch them overboard; he ‘hurls’ them as something to be rid of and forgotten.”
“The picture here is of God eager to put away our sins. Because the sacrifice of his Son is of such infinite value, he delights to apply it to sinful men and women. God is not a reluctant forgiver; he is a joyous one. His justice having been satisfied and his wrath having been exhausted [through Christ’s work on the cross], he is now eager to extend his forgiveness to all who trust in his Son as their propitiatory sacrifice.”
“He hurls our sins overboard. What a picture of the way God treats our sins. Corrie ten Boom, a dear saint of the last century, used to say, ‘And then God put up a sign saying, “No fishing allowed.”’ Why would she say that? Because she knew that we tend to drag up our old sins, that we tend to live under a vague sense of guilt. She knew we are not nearly as vigorous in appropriating God’s forgiveness as he is in extending it. Consequently, instead of living in the sunshine of God’s forgiveness through Christ, we tend to live under an overcast sky of guilt most of the time.”
We have to memorize the verse and remind ourselves of this gospel truth often: God hurls all our iniquities into the depth of the sea (Mic. 7:19). He doesn’t hurl some of our sins into a shallow pond, but all of them into the depths of the sea. That is good news!
rev shane lems