God Forgives and Forgets

“If we are faithless, He remains faithful.” —2 Timothy 2:13
“You have been foolish,” the old prophet thundered to Saul. “Your kingdom shall not continue. The Lord has sought for Himself a man after His own heart.” In that phrase, David’s epitaph was written. When the life of David is taught, discussed, dramatized or otherwise portrayed, he is described as “the man after God’s own heart.” David’s ascension to the throne, replacing Saul, marked triumphs and a rise in stature for the nation of Israel. David transformed Israel from a weak and divided kingdom into a formidable empire. David’s reputation as a warrior, poet, king, friend, and spiritual leader spiraled upward. David viewed in those lofty, historic terms, almost loses me. I can relate to the young, unqualified shepherd boy. I can relate to the young man hiding in the caves, battling fear and loneliness. I can relate to the man who grieved over the loss of loved ones and faced the reality of death. I can relate to his maturing process. But I’ll never be the heroic king, Renaissance man, and statesman that David became. Then I remember. God didn’t call David a man after “His own heart,” because of David’s accomplishments. It was because of what God did in and through David. David is a role model for us to learn how God works in our lives from beginning to end. David, whose sins were multiple and failures enormous, also knew true repentance. I compromised. I gave in to worldliness, to the weakness of the flesh, he confessed and lamented many times. When we likewise confess, we need to believe what God’s Word says, that, “He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). He forgives and He forgets, and so must you. Paul declared in Philippians 3:13: “One thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead.” Let go of the past, God says. Move ahead. Confess, repent, then take God’s forgiveness and go forward. We need to recognize the grace of God in our lives. How often we unfaithfully compromise our lives, only to experience God’s graciousness toward us. He never forsakes us. According to Scripture, it is not in His character to do so.
“If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself” (2 Timothy 2:13).

The very character of God, the character He formed in David, and the character He is building in each of His children is the story of His amazing grace.