When someone’s sin hits you like a stone, hurting you deeply, there are four things you can do. Here’s the first—You can try to forget. That’s what people say, right? “You need to forgive and . . . forget.” That sounds like a nice Pinterest post, but is that idea biblical?
I searched the Bible and learned that the word forget is used 64 times. Guess how many have to do with forgetting about someone else’s sin? Zero. In fact, “forgive and forget” could be a guilt-inducing, danger-producing way to live. If you have to forget to truly forgive, how many of us could ever do it? How could we forget the source of those scars that came from our ex’s abuse, our dad’s addiction, or the cruel words from some cruel classmates?
In addition, if we forgot every sin, how would we know who are the fools and wicked souls whom God warns us about in Proverbs and in Paul’s letters?
No, the truth is that you can forgive, even if their sin is impossible to forget. (More on this in the days to come.)
Today, as you try to forgive what you can’t forget, remember the unique forgiveness of God. He once promised, “I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more” (Jeremiah 31:34). This is the new covenant (the one-sided promise) that comes to us at the cross and at the cost of Jesus’ blood.
The all-knowing God is certainly not forgetful, but somehow (thank you, Jesus!) he chooses to remember our sins no more.