From the beginning, the Mosaic covenant was set up with brokenness woven through it. A broken leader and a fearful people were holding one part of the covenant, while a faithful and merciful God was holding the other. They needed God to save them out of physical slavery as well as the slavery of their sin. Even though they were physically freed, they lived in spiritual bondage, quickly turning against God’s laws and ways.
As fast and furious as their inner rebellion was, God was quick to move with mercy. Moses cried out to God saying, “If now I have found favor in your sight, O Lord, please let the Lord go in the midst of us, for it is a stiff-necked people, and pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for your inheritance” (Exodus 34:9).
We also have broken beginnings. We inherited this from our first mother and father, Eve and Adam (Genesis 3). And yet in his mercy, God does not leave us broken. Not only does he forgive us, he also restores us, as his own people and his inheritance. He takes us as his own.
We belong to God on a whole different level. We are not only forgiven, but we are also taken as God’s joyful possession. We get to be his. We get to be his children. He doesn’t forgive us then put us back out by ourselves. He forgives and says, Come in and be mine. I Peter 2:9–10 says, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”
We are his so that we can show and tell others of his great mercy and love. His forgiveness is never dependent on our fulfillment of law or perfection. His forgiveness calls us in to be his own.