When the prophet Isaiah came on the scene with a message from God, the Israelites had really blown it. They had rebelled against God despite all that He had done for them. No matter how much trouble they had gotten themselves into because of their rebellion, they stubbornly continued in it.
(Read Isaiah 1:1-20)
They were going through the motions with all their sacrifices and festivals, but only so that they could check them off the list. They had put a barrier between themselves and God with their sins and He wasn’t even listening to their prayers. They needed to clean themselves up. They needed to turn things around. They needed to repent.
“Take your evil deeds out of my sight! Stop doing wrong, learn to do right!” – Isaiah 1:16-17 NIV
Then God called them close and let them in on His eternal plan.
“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 as crimson, they shall be like wool.” – Isaiah 1:18 NIV
They couldn’t do it on their own, but one day He would do it for them.
All of us were in the same rebellious mess as the Israelites were. God made himself known to us through all He created so there is no excuse for denying Him. (Romans 1:20) He has written His law on our hearts, (Romans 2:15) yet mankind continues in sinful rebellion, separated from God and unable to clean ourselves up.
But God had a plan! The plan He had for the Israelites in Isaiah’s day is the same plan He has for us. The only sufficient sacrifice for their sins is the only sufficient sacrifice for ours. The only way for any sin to be made white as snow is to be washed in the blood of Jesus.
For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed His life, shedding His blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when He held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, for He was looking ahead and including them in what He would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for He himself is fair and just, and He makes sinners right in His sight when they believe in Jesus. – Romans 3:25-26 NLT
Everyone has sinned. We all fall short of the glory of God. There is nothing we can do to save ourselves because it is only through the shedding of perfect blood that sins can be forgiven. The only payment for our sins that God will accept is the blood of Jesus. If we come before Him at the end of our life with anything less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness, we will not be allowed in His presence. If you want your sins to be forgiven so that you can spend eternity in heaven…
Acknowledge that you are a sinner!
Believe that Jesus died to pay the price for your sins!
Confess that Jesus is Lord!