When you think you have been too bad or wicked for God to ever forgive you, think about these stories of God’s deep love, concern, patience, long suffering, compassion and mercy for the people HE created. If God could bring these people to confession, repentance and forgiveness, He is able to save anyone if they will only sincerely turn to Him. There’s nothing too hard for God and HE LOVES MERCY.
Story # 1
“Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty and five years in Jerusalem: But did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, like unto the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel. For he built again the high places which Hezekiah his father had broken down, and he reared up altars for Baalim, and made groves, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them. Also he built altars in the house of the LORD, whereof the LORD had said, In Jerusalem shall my name be for ever. And he built altars for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of the LORD. And he caused his children to pass through the fire in the valley of the son of Hinnom: also he observed times, and used enchantments, and used witchcraft, and dealt with a familiar spirit, and with wizards: he wrought much evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger. And he set a carved image, the idol which he had made, in the house of God, of which God had said to David and to Solomon his son, In this house, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen before all the tribes of Israel, will I put my name for ever: Neither will I any more remove the foot of Israel from out of the land which I have appointed for your fathers; so that they will take heed to do all that I have commanded them, according to the whole law and the statutes and the ordinances by the hand of Moses. So Manasseh made Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to err, and to do worse than the heathen, whom the LORD had destroyed before the children of Israel.
Manasseh’s Repentance. And the LORD spake to Manasseh, and to his people: but they would not hearken. Wherefore the LORD brought upon them the captains of the host of the king of Assyria, which took Manasseh among the thorns, and bound him with fetters, and carried him to Babylon. And when he was in affliction, he besought the LORD his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers, And prayed unto him: and he was intreated of him, and heard his supplication, and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD he was God.”
Story # 2
The Apostle Paul
This was said about the Apostle Paul.
“Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem”
This is Paul’s testimony about who he had been in the past and the story of his conversion.
“Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead? I verily thought with myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth. Which thing I also did in Jerusalem: and many of the saints did I SHUT UP IN PRISON, having received authority from the chief priests; and when they were PUT TO DEATH, I gave my voice against them. And I PUNISHED THEM oft in every synagogue, and COMPELLED THEM TO BLASPHEME; and being exceedingly mad against them, I PERSECUTED THEM even unto strange cities. Whereupon as I went to Damascus with authority and commission from the chief priests,
At midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them which journeyed with me. And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And I said, Who art thou, Lord? And He said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest. But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose,
to make thee a minister
and a witness both of these things
which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee,
To open their eyes, AND TO TURN THEM FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in Me. Whereupon, O king Agrippa, I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision”
“And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation,
that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy,
that in me first Jesus Christ MIGHT SHEW FORTH ALL LONGSUFFERING, FOR A PATTERN to them which should hereafter believe on Him to life everlasting.”
Story # 3
Jon 1:1 Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying,
Jon 1:2 Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.
“And the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee. So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the LORD. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey. And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown. So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them. For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water: But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from HIS fierce anger, that we perish not?
And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that HE had said that HE would do unto them; and HE did it not.”
(Jonah was angry because he didn’t want the people of Nineveh to escape God’s destruction because they had done very wicked things.)
“But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry. And he prayed unto the LORD, and said, I pray thee, O LORD, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that THOU art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.”
“Then said the LORD,
Doest thou well to be angry?”
“And God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be angry for the gourd? And he said, I do well to be angry, even unto death. Then said the LORD, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night:
And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than sixscore thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle?”
God’s instructions to us as believers:
“He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, AND TO LOVE MERCY, and to walk humbly with thy God?”
“For he shall have judgment without mercy,
that hath shewed no mercy;
and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.”
“My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”
“This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in HIM is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with HIM, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
But if we walk in the light, as HE is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ HIS Son cleanseth us from all sin.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, HE is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make HIM a liar, and HIS word is not in us.”