Transformed by the Word with Debora Barr

60 - How Do I Forgive Myself?

October 17, 2023 Debora Barr Episode 60
Transformed by the Word with Debora Barr
60 - How Do I Forgive Myself?
Show Notes Transcript

Rebroadcast of Episode 10
 How do you release yourself from something you have done or failed to do?  Forgiveness is a choice that you either receive or refuse to receive, and the results can last for eternity.  This episode shows you the way to peace.

 Engage with Debora Barr at:


Welcome to transformed by the word, a podcast about discovering how to live your life with gratifying purpose. God created you for a reason and the Bible contains the keys to unlock your transformed life. Now, here's your host, Debora Barr

Debora 0:22  

Thanks for joining me for Episode 10 of transformed by the word. Today we are exploring the topic. How do I forgive myself?  

There's a tragic story in the Bible, of a man who did something awful, and could not forgive himself. He ended up committing suicide.  His name was Judas Iscariot. And he was one of Jesus's disciples. He had been chosen by Jesus to join the group of disciples that Jesus then poured his life into for the next three years. When the religious leaders of his day, were looking for a way to get rid of Jesus, because he was upsetting their world, Judas offered to betray his teacher and turn Jesus over to them in exchange for some silver coins.   

When Jesus was arrested, and his execution was imminent, Judas was remorseful for what he had done. And he actually tried to return the money and proclaim Jesus's innocence. But it was too late. Jesus was going to die by crucifixion.  And as a result, Judas hanged himself.  He could not bring himself to seek forgiveness from Jesus. Nor could He forgive himself for what he had done. And his life ended tragically.


Have you done something? Or failed to do something that you have difficulty forgiving yourself for? Are you caught up in a way of life that you know is not pleasing to God and feel like your sins are unforgivable?  Let me reassure you. Forgiveness is not a feeling. Forgiveness is a biblical truth. God's forgiveness is available to each person who sincerely confesses their sin and receives his free gift of forgiveness. Jesus offers you forgiveness of your sins, because he paid the ultimate price for your sins.


There's an amazing passage of scripture in Isaiah, chapter 43, verses 25 and 26. Where God says, I, even I am He who blots out your transgressions for my own sake. And I will not remember your sins. Put me in remembrance. Let us contend together, state your case, that you may be acquitted. In this passage of Scripture, God is inviting me to state my case, to bring my sin to him, in all honesty, so that I can be acquitted. To be acquitted essentially means that I'm judged not guilty.


In this passage, God says that he will not remember my sins, I will be so completely absolved of my sin, that God chooses not to remember my sins. And he does this for his own sake. Why? You might ask? Well, so he can have a relationship with me. You see, God cannot be in the presence of sin, but he loves me. And he loves you so much, that he wants to remove the barriers to us having a relationship with him. He did this, through the blood of Jesus Christ, shed on the cross. Jesus paid the full price for our sins, so that we can be reconciled to God.


Let me read that scripture again. Isaiah 43, verses 25 and 26. I even I am He who blots out your transgressions for my own sake and I will not remember your sins.  Put me in remembrance, let us contend together, state your case, that you may be acquitted. This is amazing!  God forgives you completely.


So my question to you is, so why can't you forgive yourself?  Why do you play that tape over and over again in your mind of what you did or what you failed to do? This is not a healthy way to deal with sin in your life.


There is someone else whose story is recorded in the Bible, who also did something terrible, something that he could have held on to with unforgiveness for himself for many years.  But instead, he chose to do the right thing. Now I'm talking about King David, the king of Israel.  This story is found in the book of Second Samuel chapter 11.


One evening, King David went up on the roof of his palace. And from there, he happened to see a beautiful woman bathing so he inquired about her, he found out whose wife she was, and invited her to the palace, where he ended up sleeping with her.

Well, sometime later, she sent word to him that she was pregnant.  Turns out she was the wife of Uriah, the Hittite, one of David's Army soldiers.

So the king had the army commander, bring Uriah home.  David then spoke with Uriah about the war and sent him home.  But David learned that Uriah did not go home.  So he called him back to the palace and asked, Why didn't you go home? And Uriah said that it wouldn't be right to have the privilege of going home and being with his wife, when all of the other soldiers were still out on the battlefield fighting in the war.  So David wined and dined him, getting him drunk that night, and send him sending him home the second night. Well, when Uriah did not go home, but ended up sleeping in the same place as David servants, King David plotted to have him killed. He had hoped that Uriah would sleep with his wife, and Uriah would not know that the child he would have was not his own.


So David wrote a sealed letter to your Riaz commanding officer, instructing him to put your RIAA in the most dangerous place at the front of the battlefield and he actually had Uriah deliver his own death sentence letter to his commanding officer, when he returned to the battlefield. Uriah was killed.  And David eventually bought his wife, Bathsheba into the palace. 


Now David might have thought he got away with murder. But God confronted David through the prophet Nathan, exposing his sin. And it was David's response that saved him.

In Second Samuel chapter 12, verses 13 and 14. After David had been confronted by his sin, He said to Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord. Nathan replied to him, the Lord has taken away your sin, you are not going to die. But because by doing this, you have shown utter contempt for the Lord, the son born to you will die.

King David was honest about his sin, and God forgave him.

In fact, King David wrote a song about this incident, and it reveals his heart towards God, when he committed this tragic series of sins, committing adultery and murder.

Psalm 51 is the song that David wrote as a result of his conviction over his sin.

And it reads: Have mercy on me Oh God, according to your unfailing love. According to your great compassion, blot out my transgressions. wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions and my sin is always before me, against you and you only have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight. So you are right in your verdict, and justified when you judge.  Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me. Yet you desired faithfulness, even in the womb. You taught me wisdom in that secret place. Cleanse me with hyssop and I will be clean. Wash me and I will be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness. Let the bones you have crushed, rejoice.  Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all of my iniquity. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence, or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways. So that sinners will turn back to you.  Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, oh god, you who are God, my Savior, and my tongue will sing of your righteousness, open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise. You do not delight in sacrifice or I would bring it. You do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, oh, God is a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart. You God will not despise. May it please you to prosper Zion to build up the walls of Jerusalem, then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous and burnt offerings offered whole then bowls will be offered on your altar.


Even though King David sinned against Bathsheba, by committing adultery with her, and he sinned against Uriah, by committing adultery with his wife, and ultimately by killing him, David says that he sinned against God and God alone. Did you catch that?  That is a significant point. David says that he sinned against God and God alone. All sin is ultimately against God.  And David was beginning to feel the separation that sin causes between us and God.  King David loved God, and He loved that intimate relationship that he had with God, so when he committed these sins, he was feeling the loss of that intimacy with God.

David realized that his sin had damaged his heart. And only God can renew, restore and transform his heart. 


What sins that you have committed have damaged your heart.

David says the sacrifice he is bringing to God is a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart. When we sin, in order to be free from the guilt, we need to humble ourselves and bring our sin to God for forgiveness.

King David wrote another Psalm that is believed to be about his sin with Bathsheba and Uriah.

This one is Psalm 32. And the first five verses of Psalm 32. Read like this


blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven; whose sins are covered. Blessed it is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them. And in whose spirit is no deceit. When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long for day and night, your hand was heavy upon me, my strength was sapped, as in the heat of summer. Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord, and you forgave the guilt of my sin. 


Again, we see what King David does with the guilt of his sin, and the result of his confession. King David learned that confession of his sin to God is what sets him free.

Earlier I told you about Judas, who refuse to confess his sin to Jesus, and refuse to forgive himself for what he had done. He committed suicide and ended up dying unforgiven.


But there was another disciple of the Lord, who also betrayed Jesus. But he had a very different outcome.  I'm talking about Simon Peter, and his story is recorded in Luke chapter 22.

At the conclusion of the meal that has become known as the Last Supper, where Jesus ate with his disciples, before being betrayed, abused and crucified, Jesus predicted that Peter would betray him by denying three times that he even knew Jesus. before the rooster crowed, the next morning. Well, Peter swore this would never happen, that he was ready to die for Jesus.  But when the pressure was on, and Jesus was being beaten and abused, Peter did deny that he was with Jesus. And he ended up denying that he even knew Jesus. And the Bible says that Peter went outside and wept bitterly when he realized that Jesus was correct.  He had, in fact, done exactly what he swore he would not do.

But Peter has a very different outcome than Judas did.  You see, after Jesus rose from the dead, he went to Peter to restore him to prove to Peter that he had really forgiven him. And boy, it changed Peters life forever. He was transformed from a fearful disciple who caved under the intense pressure of Jesus's trial and abuse to become a leader in the church.

Peter was able to accept the forgiveness that Jesus offered him, unlike Judas, who took his own life, holding on to his sin, and his unforgiveness to the end.


God stands ready to forgive your sin. If we will only come to him and confess it. Think about this. It is actually sin on our part, to hold on to unforgiveness, even unforgiveness of ourselves.  If we refuse to forgive ourselves for sin, we're sinning against God, because he paid such a high price for the forgiveness of our sins. Let go of that sin, forgive yourself, and receive the amazing peace of God.



If you've never confessed your sins to the Lord Jesus, and surrendered your life to Him, you can get that right. Right now.  Jesus paid an incredibly high price he paid with his life, to forgive us for our sins. And he stands ready to forgive you and bring you into the family of God.

It is by faith that we believe that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. And if you're ready to place your trust in the Lordship of Jesus Christ, would you pray this prayer with me right now?

God, I confess that I'm a sinner and I need Jesus in my life.

I repent of my sins and I turn to you.

I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sins, and he was buried and he rose from the dead. I accept this by faith and invite Jesus to be Lord of my life, to reign and rule in my heart. Thank you for forgiving me and saving me. Amen.


If you just prayed that prayer, you are now saved, and you will have eternal life with the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Now, if you are already saved, you surrendered your life at some time in the past. But lately, you've gotten off track, you've slipped back into letting sin control your life and living in unforgiveness. You can repent and recommit your life to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

The Bible tells us in first John one, verse nine, that if we confess our sins, He meaning Jesus is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If you repent of your rebellion and you confess your sins to Him, He will forgive you and bring you back into right standing with God. All you need to do is accept His forgiveness. And forgive yourself. Now is a great time to get right with God.

None of us know if we will see tomorrow. Today is the time to make that decision.

Now if you just accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, or you read committed your life to him, I would love to hear from you to support you. With next steps.

You can visit my website at and let me know about your decision for Christ so that I can encourage you and pray for you.


Now, my prayer for you today is that you will never again hold on to unforgiveness, especially holding on to unforgiveness of yourself.  When you are forgiven by God, you must also forgive yourself. 

Father in the name of your son Jesus Christ, I pray that you would help my brother or my sister who is having difficulty forgiving themselves. Lord, allow them to grace to accept your forgiveness for their sins And grant them the peace that only comes from you. It's in the powerful and matchless Name of Jesus that I pray. Amen.

Stay tuned for our next episode of transformed by the word where we will learn about the key to life.


Announcer 23:04  

Thank you for listening to transformed by the word with your host Debora Barr, be sure to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes or Google Play and connect with us at Until next time, be blessed.