Barriers To Forgiveness

I John 1:5-10

When building our new building I became aware of a number of laws that are now in place to minimize barriers to those who must deal with handicaps. We had to install ramps, and larger bathrooms to make our building wheelchair accessible. If you would like to have an eye opening experience, borrow one of the wheelchairs out here for a while. Try getting from one point to another. It isn't easy! I am sure that you will encounter several barriers that will prevent you from doing what you want to do. The fact is that there are many kinds of barriers in this world. Some we can see, others we cannot. There are physical barriers, social barriers, educational barriers, racial barriers, and this morning, I want to talk about spiritual barriers. Now we know that God loves us. He tells us time and again that He does. He has shown us how much He loves us by giving His only Son, Jesus to die in our place. His desire is that we all go to heaven when we die. He is not willing that any should perish, but that all would come to repentance.

Friday evening I was called to come to the hospital to minister to a family whose father was not expected to live. As I prayed with them and tried to offer comfort, their father lay in the bed connected to a variety of machines monitoring every vital statistic. With each minute he grew closer to eternity. Just as he passed away, one daughter took my hand and asked me to pray that he would go to heaven. I did my best to give them comfort at such a difficult time. But I could not give her assurance that her father would be in heaven. You see there is a barrier between heaven and earth. There is something that will keep everyone of us here today from entering into heaven. That barrier is SIN. The only assurance that we will overcome that barrier is found in our faith in Jesus Christ.

Read: 1 John 5:1-13

The only way to remove the barrier of sin is to accept the forgiveness of God. But there are some barriers to forgiveness that must be overcome.

I. The Barrier of Denial.

II. Confession of Our Sin. (1 John 1:9) "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

III. The Final Barrier is to Accept Forgiveness.

Good news, barriers can be overcome! All of these that I have mentioned today can be overcome in our lives. Will you come this morning admitting your need as sinner out of fellowship with God? Will you confess your sin and receive God's wonderful forgiveness? Will you accept it as a free gift from Him because of His great love for you? Christian, are we walking in fellowship with God? Are they those that we need to forgive or perhaps those who we need to go to and ask their forgiveness? Don't allow these barriers to keep you from doing what God wants you to do today. Come now.