One of the foundational promises of the New Covenant is found in Jeremiah 31:34: “I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” And Paul adds in the New Testament: “And you, being dead in your sins . . . hath He quickened together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses” (Colossians 2:13). God has promised us His forgiveness—for every sin.
However, this promise of forgiveness is limited to certain people. It applies only to those who have been crushed and sickened by their sins, gone down into the depths of guilt, endured the soul-searching of the Holy Ghost, and have repented and turned to Christ in faith!
Jesus Himself says, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 7:21). Sadly, multitudes of Christians are not troubled at all by their sin; their besetting habit does not bother them in the least. They have convinced themselves that God is so merciful and full of grace, He will pardon them even if they stubbornly continue in sin.
No, never! They have appropriated to themselves a false peace, choking off the Holy Spirit's convictions, searchings and dealings. They have sought forgiveness before their guilt could ripen into godly sorrow.
Yet, at the same time, God's forgiveness can be obtained only by faith. We cannot reason it out. Christ’s gift to us of His blood atonement is so deep, so gracious, so mysterious, that it is far beyond any human ability to understand. We may feel condemnation, fear and guilt over our trespasses, but our heavenly Father stands lovingly beside us at all times, ready to forgive. The blood of Christ, the love of the Father, the Lord's desire to pardon—all these blessings are known only by faith: “No man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith” (Galatians 3:11).