rebelling against low expectations

The Beauty of Forgiveness and Freedom from Condemnation


I was depressed and scared. A list of my sins ran through my head, and I couldn’t let go of them. Condemnation gripped me as I thought of all the ways I had done wrong. I was covered by a cloud of gloom and sadness. My joy was gone.

But God’s forgiveness is more than all my sins.

His divine plan was forgiveness, to free His dear children from condemnation. All I had to do was embrace His grace, His forgiveness, and the freedom from condemnation He offered me, for God is an awesome God, capable of forgiving all my sin.

God’s Plan Was Forgiveness

One of the most famous verses in the Bible completely sums up everything under this heading. John 3:16, ESV states, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”

This verse was spoken during Jesus’s conversation with Nicodemus, a Pharisee who was trying to understand being born again. Jesus explained that God gave His precious, beloved Son into the world to save His sinning children—to save us.

With a gift, you don’t merely stare at it. You accept it. No conditions, no rules, no exceptions.

God’s plan was to give us forgiveness, and He wants us to accept it, just like a gift. Because without His forgiveness, our life has no hope, no purpose. Share on X

God’s plan was to give us forgiveness, and He wants us to accept it, just like a gift. Because without His forgiveness, our life has no hope, no purpose.

Because of His unconditional love, He sent His precious, beloved Son to take the penalty for our sins so that we wouldn’t have to.

What a wonderful gift! This gift is far greater than any other thing we could want. This gift is our hope, our joy, our life in Christ.

With forgiveness, our lives have an eternal reward that surpasses anything we could ever imagine.

We Are Without Condemnation

In the same conversation that Jesus had with Nicodemus, He explained that the condemnation that might come from our sins was taken upon Himself so that we would not have to endure it. Jesus, the One who knew no sin, took our sin upon Himself in His sacrificial death.

I was so consumed by my sins that I couldn’t shake the condemnation I was heaping upon myself.

But Jesus is the opposite of condemnation.

John 3:17, ESV, says “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him.”

I kept listing my sins, thinking that it was a dirty record that couldn’t be erased and that I would be condemned for my sins. But that is not the glorious truth of forgiveness! God doesn’t keep a record of sins because God is such a loving, forgiving God.

During my time of spiritual struggle, I kept remembering Romans 8:1, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,” (ESV).

Instead of keeping myself consumed by a list of sins, all I had to do was remember that with Christ and His forgiveness, I am without condemnation.

God’s Grace Is Enough

No condemnation is only possible through God’s grace. Throughout my time of struggle, I had to simply remember God’s abundance of grace towards me.

It is enough.

Romans 5:17, ESV states that, “For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.”

This verse explains that God’s grace is abundant. And I had to learn that abundance of grace in my life. Not grace only when I have a “good day.” Grace every day, in the highs and in the lows, when I felt so condemned by my sin.

The verse also explains that righteousness is a free gift. It’s not something I could ever earn or deserve, because I am sinful and have fallen short of God’s glory. It’s a gift. I don’t have to earn it. I just have to accept it.

In accepting God’s free gift of grace, I learned so much about who God really is. The loving, merciful, compassionate God of the universe. The God who spoke the world into existence, raised people from the dead, and forgave the sins of the world—He forgives my sins.

I know times of spiritual struggle will come again, and I still struggle today. The reward I get, though, is so much greater than any struggle I face on this earth.

Romans 5:2, ESV states that, “Through Him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”

In our hard times, our struggles, and our depressions, let’s turn our eyes to Jesus who offers us forgiveness of sins, freedom from condemnation, and abundant grace. Let’s remember our eternal reward—spending eternity in glory with our Lord and Savior, Christ the King.

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About the author

Caitlyn Koser

Caitlyn Koser is a young homeschooled writer who lives in the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia. She loves Jesus, good books, and good friends. She loves reading and writing historical- and non-fiction. When not reading, writing, or making long cliche-replacement lists, she is usually outside in God's creation or quizzing her siblings on science trivia questions.


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  • Thank you, Caitlyn! This is a message I keep needing to be reminded of. It’s so easy to get “consumed by a list of sins” and forget that we have freedom from it through God’s gift of grace. I also loved how you stressed on remembering our eternal reward. It helps me look to Christ, get up, and move on.

By Caitlyn Koser
rebelling against low expectations

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