At Peace With The Past

At Peace With The Past

Abraham breathed his last and died in a ripe old age, an old man and satisfied with life.
–Genesis 25:8

If I were to compose my own epitaph, I do not think I could come up with a better one than Abraham’s in Genesis 25:7-8: “These are all the years of Abraham’s life that he lived, one hundred and seventy-five years. Abraham breathed his last and died in a ripe old age, an old man and satisfied with life; and he was gathered to his people.”

Wouldn’t that be great to see on your tombstone? “He or she died at a ripe old age, satisfied with life.” That word “satisfied” is a synonym for the word “contented.” Abraham died contented. He died at peace.

What does it mean to be satisfied? For Abraham, it meant that he was at peace with his past. Remember, Abraham was seventy-five years of age before he found God–or more accurately, before God found him. He had spent decades of his life as an idol worshipper, chasing after other gods, just like his father, Terah, did. There are all kinds of sins in Abraham’s past, but all of that changed in Genesis 15:6. The Bible says, “He believed in the Lord; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness.” At that moment, Abraham placed his faith in God’s promise, and because of that he knew his past sins had been forgiven. In writing about that, Paul said in Romans 4:8, “Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account.” Abraham had the relief of knowing that whatever sins were in his past, they were forgiven and forgotten, forever.

We all have a past, and all of us have in our past things we are ashamed of. Things we hope nobody ever discovers about us. Things that we would hate to have to answer to God for. We all have a past, just like Abraham had a past. And we will never be at peace, we will never face God confidently, unless we know that our past has been dealt with, cleansed, forgiven, and forgotten forever. The only way that happens is by faith in Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1 says, “Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

It does not matter how short or how long your past is or what it contains, there is forgiveness through Jesus Christ. His blood is sufficient to cleanse you of all unrighteousness. You will never be satisfied, you will never be at peace with yourself, until you are at peace with God.

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Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Finishing Strong” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2009.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org