I, even I, am he - The original is extremely abrupt: הוא אנכי אנכי anochi anochi hu, "I, I, He." Is there any mystery in this form? Does it refer to a plurality of persons in the Godhead?
For mine own sake - In the pardon of sin God can draw no reason but from his own infinite goodness.
I, even I, am he - This verse contains a gracious assurance that their sins would be blotted out, and the reason why it would be done. The pronoun ‹I‘ is repeated to make it emphatic, as in Isaiah 43:11. Perhaps also God designs to show them the evil of the sins which are mentioned in the previous verses, by the assurance that they were committed against him who alone could forgive, and who had promised them pardon. The passage also reminds them, that it was God alone who could pardon the sins of which, as a nation, they had been guilty.
That blotteth out thy transgressions - This metaphor is taken from the custom of keeping accounts, where, when a debt is paid, the charge is blotted or cancelled. Thus God says he blotted out the sins of the Jews. He cancelled them. He forgave them. Of course, when forgiven, punishment could not be exacted, and he would treat them as pardoned; that is, as his friends.
For mine own sake - Not because you deserve it, or have any claim, or that it would not be right to punish you. Not even primarily to promote your happiness and salvation, but for my sake;
1. To show the benevolence of my character;
2. To promote my glory by your forgiveness and salvation (see Ezekiel 36:22).
And will not remember thy sins - They shall be forgiven. Hezekiah Isaiah 38:17 expresses the same idea by saying ‹thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.‘ We may learn from this verse:
1. That it is God only who can pardon sin. How vain, then, is it for man to attempt it! How wicked for man to claim the prerogative! And yet it is an essential part of the papal system that the Pope and his priests have the power of remitting the penalty of transgression.
2. That this is done by God solely for his own sake. It is not
(a) because we have any claim to it, for then it would not be pardon, but justice. It is not
(b) because we have any power to compel God to forgive, for who can contend with him, and how could mere power procure pardon? It is not
(c) because we have any merit, for then also it would be justice, and we have no merit. Nor is it
(d) primarily in order that we may be happy, for our happiness is a matter not worthy to be named, compared with the honor of God. But it is solely for his own sake - to promote his glory - to show his perfections - to evince the greatness of his mercy and compassion - and to show his boundless and eternal love.
3. They who are pardoned should live to his glory, and not to themselves. For that they were forgiven, and it should be the grand purpose of their lives so to live as to show forth the goodness, compassion, and love of that merciful Being who has blotted out their sins.
4. If people are ever pardoned, they must come to God - and to God alone. They must come, not to justify themselves, but to confess their crimes. And they must come with a willingness that God should pardon them on just such terms as he pleases; at just such a time as he pleases; and solely with a view to the promotion of his own glory. Unless they have this feeling, they never can be forgiven, nor should they be forgiven.
The great day of the Lord is near at hand. When Christ appears in the clouds of heaven, those who have not sought Him with all the heart, those who have allowed themselves to be deceived, will surely perish. Our only safety is to be found through repentance and conversion, and the blotting out of sins. Those who will now seek the Lord earnestly, humbling their hearts before Him, and forsaking their sins, will, through the sanctification of the truth, be fitted to unite with the members of the royal family, and will see the King in His beauty.... TDG 248.2Read in context »
Dear Brother D,
I recollect your countenance among several others that were shown me in vision in Rochester, New York, December 25, 1865. I was shown that you were upon the background. Your judgment is convinced that we have the truth, but you have not as yet experienced its sanctifying influence. You have not followed closely the footsteps of our Redeemer, therefore you are unprepared to walk even as He walked. As you listen to the words of truth, your judgment says that it is correct, it cannot be gainsaid; but immediately the unsanctified heart says: “These are hard sayings, who can hear them? you would better give up your efforts to keep pace with the people of God, for new and strange and trying things will be continually arising; you will have to stop sometime, and you may just as well stop now, and better than to go further.” 1T 543.1Read in context »
“Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust.” Psalm 103:13, 14. MH 123.1
“Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God.” “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Jeremiah 3:13; 1 John 1:9. MH 123.2
“I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud, thy sins: return unto Me; for I have redeemed thee.” Isaiah 44:22. MH 123.3Read in context »
Never has a soul that trusts in Jesus been left to perish. “I, even I, am he,” the Lord declares, “that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.” HP 116.6Read in context »