By Doug Bell
1 Corinthians 6:
9 “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,
10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”
Having just mentioned some of the most perverted and harmful sins that a human being could commit. Paul finishes with some of the most reassuring and hopeful words a human being could receive! Verse 11 “And such were some of you.” Notice, he didn’t say and such “are” some of you.’ No! WERE, Past Tense! It doesn’t matter what you have done in the past. If you have Jesus as you Savior and Lord, all your sins are cancelled! See a few verses that teach this:
•Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.
•Micah 7:19 “He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.”
•Hebrews 8:12 “For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.”
•Psalms 103:12 “as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.”
•Isaiah 38:17b “but in love you have delivered my life from the pit of destruction, for you have cast all my sins behind your back.”
•Romans 4:7-8 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; 8 blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”
•John 1:29 “The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”
All these beautiful promises come to us through the great finished work of Jesus upon the cross!
Look at verse 11 again! “…But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”
Let’s take them in reverse order;
1.) You were… “justified.” Justification is a judicial term used in courts of law. It means a legal pronouncement handed down by a Judge. Here it means God ‘declares’ anyone who truly places their faith in Jesus’s death, burial, and resurrection NOT GUILTY!
2.) You were… “sanctified.” There is two parts to Sanctification. A.) Positional Sanctification, This too is a work of God of conversion. Sin is dethroned, the new believer dies to sin. The Old self is crucified, and a new principle of holiness is implanted. B.) Practical Sanctification, this is the lifelong process where the Holy Spirit makes us more like Jesus.
3.) You were… “Washed.” This is not a mere washing of the body or baptism. This refers to the New Life God gives through Spiritual cleansing and regeneration.
All of this is freely offered to any who would simply: 1.) admit your inability to save yourselves. That you can’t be good enough or you can’t earn salvation any other way. That 2.) You realize you are a sinner and deserve to go to an eternal Hell. But, 3.) You now understand that Jesus did everything necessary to save you that you couldn’t do for yourself. -He lived a perfect life without sin, so He could be a Sacrifice in your place. -Your sins were placed on Jesus and He was punished instead of you. -He literally died! -And God the Father raised Him from the dead to show that He (the Father) had accepted Jesus’ sacrifice for you!
It is a “Finished Sacrifice!” Everything needed has been done. Believe on what the Lord Jesus Christ has done for you and you may be saved!
If you do, your sins will be forgiven and you too can say “I was… But I am washed, I am sanctified, I am justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”