How to get past your past
Ellen Street, Manchester:
If you have never done anything in your life, at some point in time, to cause you to be ashamed, chances are you have not been living on this earth because, by nature, humans are flawed and prone to mess up.
But, because God knows we were born in sin and shaped in iniquity, He is just and merciful to forgive us, and, according Pastor Damian Chambers, through his evangelistic series, 'Homeward Bound' which we continue to follow, God welcomes all sinners to repentance.
"We have all done something we are not proud of, whether privately or publicly. Things we would want to forget and have others forget as well. In the Bible, there's a more serious situation with a king named David - a man after God's own heart."
Pastor Chambers recounted the story in II Samuels, Chapter 11 that highlighted, at the summit of his success and conquest as a king, David had an experience while at home sitting down and the army was in battle.
The Bible says David was walking on his roof in the cool of the day when he saw a beautiful lady having a bath. He abused his power and took advantage of Bathsheba. He thought after the act, but he soon got news that she was pregnant and he realised that he would be exposed.
SUBMIT TO CHRIST
"In order to cover up his wrongs, he deceived Bathsheba's husband and later sent him to the front of battle. But that didn't help as guilt continued to stifle David. So it is with some of us. How do we get pass our past? How do we bury the guilt that rob us of the freedom to continue our lives in a peaceful way? Should we do like David and try to cover our tracks? Tell lies? Or pay people?" asked Chambers.
To this he responded, that just like David, our hopeless situation can become one of redemption if we are willing to submit to Christ.
"Out of this experience we have the most beautiful Psalm that was ever written: Psalm 51. And we can use this as lessons to get pass our past. The first thing we need to realise is that after the prophet rebuked David for his sins, David no longer attempted to cover up his past."
According Chambers, David acknowledged that he sinned against God - he called sinned by its right name when confessing, and David not only confessed his sins in particular, but he confessed his sinfulness.
"David said, 'Behold I was shaped in iniquity and in sin did my mother conceive me'. We need to understand that we do not commit sin because we make mistakes; we commit sin because it is a part of our nature. Without the help of the Holy Spirit, we are going to find ourselves back in the same situation ..."
The pastor preached that there is only One Man who should have the weight of sins and He has no problem casting them to the depths of the sea.
"We only have one sin bearer. There is no need for you to be carrying your sins around. Jesus is the only appointed sin bearer and He can bear it all. It doesn't matter what you have done, you can confess your sins and God will forgive you. What can wash away your sins? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. Jesus told the man that was sick of palsy, 'I do this that you might know that the Son of man has power on earth to forgive sins'. One of the greatest danger we face is the result of sin, yet there is a solution for it."
He continued, "When you confess and repent of your sins, God gives you the Holy Spirit and it is the Holy Spirit that allows you to make that change in your life; that you were born in sin and shapen in iniquity. You can walk a different path ... the drunkard can put down his bottle because of the Holy Spirit. God doesn't wait until tomorrow to forgive you, He does it today. When you are made new, you are like a baby and the baby has no past because Jesus cast your sins in the depths of the sea. All we need to do is come to Jesus just as we are, repent and be baptised."