One of my favorite Bible passages is Micah 7:19: “He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all theirs sins into the depths of the sea.” Most scientists say that the deepest part of the ocean is over 39,000 feet down which translates to about eight miles down. That’s a long way down.
There are two times especially when this passage comes to mind. One is when I am by the ocean. As I stand on a beach or if I am looking down on it from a plane I imagine trying to find something in it. We all have seen movies or heard stories of the difficulty of finding survivors of shipwrecks floating on its surface. That’s difficult enough. But trying to find something under water – trying to find something that is lying on the depths – that deserves the title, “Mission Impossible”.
The other time I think of his passage occurs much more frequently. It is when the seriousness and ugliness of my sin stops me in my tracks. When I see the ease with which I can speak cutting and unkind words. When, without any effort, I pursue a selfish course of action. When my prayers are rushed and shallow. When I see pride or envy or greed or lust or a number of other things residing in the deep caverns of my heart. When I see how consistently I fall so short. At such times, what a comfort is to picture the vast oceans – to think about eight miles of water covering my sins.
Although God could easily find sins eight miles down, it is obvious that he uses this imagery to support the biblical truth that sins forgiven by him are sins forgotten by him. What a relief that is! What a joy that is! Talk about a heavy weight being lifted off – never to be put on again!
Thank you, Lord, for giving such total relief from pressing guilt. Thank you, Lord, for drowning sins in the depths of the sea – never to be dredged up again.