As we try to dig deeper into understanding forgiveness, it’s very important that we first understand what it means when God forgives. We easily say that God forgives us of our sins but many times we forget that He also forgives us of our iniquities.
1. great wickedness or injustice
2. anything that turns away from God’s straight and perfect path
3. twisted and distorted
Iniquity originated from the fall of the archangel Lucifer. As a beautiful and perfect angel, Lucifer entertained a thought that was out of alignment with God and His divine justice. Thoughts are powerful. When we choose to believe God, we put our spiritual substance in a Power that activates the invisible world of the heavens. In a similar way, when Lucifer entertained this twisted thought, it activated a spiritual substance, which then became the seed of evil. It is from this seed of evil that all wickedness originates.
When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden of Eden, they opened the door of evil to the human race. Because of this, every human being is born in the condition of sin, even if they have not yet sinned through actions. In other words, evil is transmitted to humans in birth and impregnates the human heart with thoughts and intentions opposed to God’s righteousness, truth, and love. Iniquity then becomes the total sum of all that is evil in mankind. Iniquity impregnates the spirit of a human being at conception. It operates as the spiritual umbilical cord that transmits the spiritual DNA of evil from one generation to the next. This is how a twisted and sinful legacy is imprinted and passed onto children.
So how does this connect to God’s forgiveness?
When Jesus hung on the cross, he took upon himself this evil and iniquity and put it to death on the cross. As a result, when we come to him for forgiveness, this is what he forgives us of. Through his death, he paid the legal consequences that we were supposed to pay.
As mere humans, we are unable to pardon, but we can at least forgive. Sometimes when we struggle to forgive others, we must remember that it does not compare to the magnitude of God's forgiveness. Even so, God commends us to follow His example and forgive. When we are trying to forgive we can remember that because Jesus paid the price on the Cross, God has uprooted the seed of evil in us and given us a new nature. God forgives us of all our iniquities.
2 Corinthians 5:21 NASB
He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
Damalie Namale, M.A.